If you’re familiar with the YouTube community, a part of it yourself, or maybe you have one or two creators that you watch consistently, you might have heard about the rumored recent updates to the community guidelines. YouTube’s current community guidelines have not been changed to match the ‘claimed’ guidelines that are circulating the internet currently. However, there will be big changes to the YouTube community if and when these rumored guidelines are put into effect.
When you create content and post it to the YouTube site, they expect for you to consider their rules and regulations which up until recently were mainly centered on copyright infringements and the obvious internet safety rules. However, with the update of guidelines, YouTube has been said to be in the works of creating some rules that have caused an uproar amongst their creators. With the new guidelines, YouTube has placed stricter rules on inappropriate language, vulgarity, profanity and sensitive topics, including: political, war, or tragedy, etc.
By adding these to their community guidelines, YouTube is seemingly not asking for much more than videos that could be rated PG13 at the most. However, what many who are not involved in creating content for the site do not realize is that this limits the amount of content creators can make money off of. If YouTube were to ‘demonetize’ all of a creators videos that violate these guidelines, they will no longer make money from those or any content that they post in the future. For those creators who use YouTube as their sole source of income, this could be detrimental to their careers.
If you’re not so familiar with how making money from YouTube works, what happens is, when you start to create content you can add what is called 'monetization' to your channel. You must go through a process to do this, however it can be done no matter the size if your audience. Once your content is monetized, you then begin to receive pay for the amount of traffic your videos earn by monitoring the number of page clicks on your videos. Another way creators with large audiences make money is on brand deals. What happens with brand deals is a company will contact a specific person whose audience they think is large enough and pay them to mention their product in one of their videos. There are several ways to make money on YouTube but without ad revenue, many creators who do not have audiences large enough for brand deals are going to lose out on a lot of money.
That being said, many creators, especially those with a large, younger demographic as their primary audience, are upset by these guidelines due to the content of their videos. They are making money off of their videos which YouTube is now putting restrictions on the kind of content they can make, because believe it or not, young viewers are incredibly drawn to content with profanity and even sensitive topics like politics. Many young viewers see these popular creators as people that they can relate to and are also upset that the content they can find in the YouTube community is changing.
As it stands now, YouTube has not changed their community guidelines to match the rumored list of changes, but there will be big changes if and when they do make the updates.