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YouTube has demonetized videos by some the platform’s top content creators, leading many users with millions of fans to reconsider their future with the site.
YouTube creator Ethan Klein from the channel H3H3Productions, which has over 3,600,000 subscribers, complained on Twitter Wednesday that YouTube had demonetized a range of videos, from his most popular “Vape Nation” comedy sketch, which has nearly 15 million views, to a “Thank You” for 3 Million subscribers video.
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“Dude same,” replied Jenna Marbles, a popular YouTube personality with over 17 million subscribers. “I’ve also had a bizarre selection of videos demonetized with no notification or option to appeal.”
Several other top content creators also replied, adding that they were experiencing the same problem.
Other YouTubers, including animator PsychicPebbles and personality Boogie2988, suggested action against the site in protest.
“Yo f*ck this sh*t, let’s start our own website,” said PsychicPebbles, who has already moved the majority of his content to his own site in protest of YouTube’s treatment of animators in the past.
“Just know that they’ll fix this or we will revolt,” added Boogie2988. “You can’t just effectively fire top creators for no reason.”
In response to YouTube demonetizing his videos, popular animator David Firth, who has created some of YouTube’s most viewed animation series including Salad Fingers, Burnt Face Man, and Jerry Jackson, pulled his latest work from the site and launched a Patreon account for fans to donate as an alternative method of income.
“Ahhhhhhh news video is age restricted so no revenue??? how did this happen??” posted Firth on Twitter. “I’m pulling it until this gets fixed.”
“Sorry I have deleted my new video. It was age restricted on youtube. I’m not working that hard to make no money,” he continued, adding “Need a new plan. Youtube is not working for me any more. Any suggestions?”
Firth went on to proclaim that “If Youtube wants to be daytime TV that’s their business. I just need to take my business elsewhere,” explaining, “My videos are gradually becoming un-monetized without explanation. It’s happening.”
Firth’s Patreon account has already received 92 patrons, who have pledged a total of $607 “per creation” made.
YouTube replied to Breitbart Tech’s request for comment in an email, citing the withdrawal of advertisers over the past month due to their brands being featured on “offensive” and “extremist” content.
“We recently posted a blog explaining how we’re addressing strong feedback from advertisers around ads running on content they feel does not align with their brand,” said a YouTube spokesman in an email to Breitbart Tech. “Advertiser confidence on YouTube is critical to the financial success of creators. Unfortunately, in recent weeks, we’ve seen some advertisers suspend their campaigns. So earlier this week, we began implementing the new brand safety controls outlined in the blog.”
“If you’re seeing fluctuations in your revenue over the next few weeks, it may be because we’re fine tuning our ads systems to address these concerns,” they continued. “While this can be unsettling, we’re working as fast we can to improve our systems so that advertisers feel more confident in our platform and revenue continues to flow to creators over the long term.”
What can you specifically do?
If you are monetizing your videos and seeing a drop in revenue from videos that are being monetized, review your videos’ thumbnails, titles and descriptions to ensure they accurately represent the content in your video and are aligned with the advertiser friendly content guidelines.
If you think your video was demonetized in error, request an appeal by clicking on the yellow $ icon next to the video in Video Manager. You will be notified once a decision is made on the appeal, and if it is successful, your video will immediately be monetized again and have a green $ icon. In light of these changes, we’re pledging to make the reviews process around appeals even faster for creators. You can learn more about how to request an appeal here.
We want to ensure that advertisers continue to support the creativity on YouTube and while ad restrictions can feel limiting, they’re essential to protecting the livelihood of creators. We will continue to provide updates on our progress in the Product Forum.
Charlie Nash is a reporter for Breitbart Tech. You can follow him on Twitter @MrNashington or like his page at Facebook.