YouTube Bans Hateful Videos From Making Moola Through Advertising


After facing a significant backlash from a variety of advertisers, YouTube has finally toughened its content guidelines.

The video-streaming giant has created three categories to keep a check on extremist videos making their way on the platform. The three categories are - Hateful content, Inappropriate use of family entertainment characters, and Incendiary and demeaning content.

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YouTube initially promised the advertisers to take action against hateful content, in March. It ensured the advertisers that it wouldn't monetize extremist content, which meant that ads wouldn't appear on such videos. It also meant that uploader of such videos wouldn't be able to make a dime from the video.

To recall, the controversy between the advertisers and YouTube stirred up when one of the advertisers withdrew their advertisement from YouTube after it appeared on extremist videos. After the incident, various major brands like Loreal, The Guardian, Channel 4, and others pulled out their ads from YouTube, including ads from the Australian government. The protest led to change in policies by YouTube.

Toughened Guidelines by YouTube

The new guidelines for content have been explained in a dedicated blog post by Ariel Bardin, VP, Product Management at YouTube:

Hateful content: Content that promotes discrimination or disparages or humiliates an individual or group of people on the basis of the individual’s or group’s race, ethnicity, or ethnic origin, nationality, religion, disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or other characteristic associated with systematic discrimination or marginalization.

Inappropriate use of family entertainment characters: Content that depicts family entertainment characters engaged in violent, sexual, vile, or otherwise inappropriate behavior, even if done for comedic or satirical purposes.

Incendiary and demeaning content: Content that is gratuitously incendiary, inflammatory, or demeaning. For example, video content that uses gratuitously disrespectful language that shames or insults an individual or group.

The new strict guideline seem like a thin line between freedom of expression and avoidance of resentment. The strategy is to allow all kind of content but preventing ads from appearing on them. The only good thing is that uploader of such content won't be able to make money out of it, regardless of how many views their video generates. Notably, in the blog post, YouTube mentioned the new guidelines as "advertiser-friendly content guidelines" that mainly focuses on what is suitable for advertising.

In addition to toughened content guidelines, YouTube is also working on speeding up the process to address complaints against videos that escape the new guidelines.

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