YouTube Updates Terms of Service to Run Ads on Videos by Small Creators, Without Offering Revenue Share

YouTube’s new Terms of Service mean it can roll out ads on channels that aren’t a part of the YouTube Partner Programme. The Google-owned video streaming platform has brought the new change through an update to its Terms of Service that is initially applicable in the US but will apply in all regions by the end of next year. According to the new terms, YouTube will not pay any share of its revenue to creators for running ads if they aren’t a part of the YouTube Partner Programme.

As explained on a forum post, YouTube has added a new section to its Terms of Service: Right to Monetise to highlight that it will start running ads on videos from channels that are not a part of the YouTube Partner Programme.

YouTube typically gives a portion of the revenue it earns through ads to the creators who are part of its Partner Programme. However, with the new rules, it will not pay small creators whose channels are being used to serve ads.

Creators need to have at least 4,000 public watch hours in the last 12 months and over 1,000 subscribers on their channels to become eligible for the YouTube Partner Programme. This essentially helps monetise videos, which isn’t the case for all non-eligible, small creators.

Prior to the latest update, YouTube was running ads on videos from channels that don’t meet the criteria for the Partner Programme only under special circumstances, such as if the channel was previously a member of the Programme or if it was monetised by a record label under a copyright claim.

Content creators on YouTube aren’t happy with the new move. It is quite valid since the website is not providing any share of the revenues it would generate from the ads it is rolling out on small channels.

YouTube has not provided any details about the number of creators being impacted by the new rules. However, it did mention in its forum post that the change will initially be implemented “on a limited number of videos” and will be limited to the creators in the US. Ads will also run only on videos that meet YouTube’s ad-friendly guidelines and don’t include “inappropriate” language, violence, or adult content.

Apart from the monetisation-focussed update, YouTube has updated the language of its terms of collecting user data. It added the word “faces” to the information it doesn’t allow to be collected from its service. The company stated that it wanted to be explicit about what can’t be collected in terms of user data with the new update.

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