Starting Wednesday, YouTube will start running ads on some creators’ videos, but won’t give them a portion of their advertising revenue because they’re not big enough to join its partner program,media The Verge reported. When ads run on YouTube videos, these creators typically earn a portion of their revenue through their roles in YouTube’s partner programs. Under the new monenization rules, creators who are not part of the Partner Program “may see ads on some of your videos” under the update to the platform’s terms of service.
Prior to the update, YouTube said the videos would only receive ads in limited circumstances, such as as being moneified by record labels as part of a copyright claim. The update will primarily affect small creators who don’t have huge ratings; YouTube’s partner program requires creators to watch 4,000 hours in the past 12 months and have more than 1,000 subscribers.
Advertising is big business for YouTube and its parent company, Google, which generated $5 billion in revenue last quarter alone. Advertising is also a big business for creators, who may rely on the site’s advertising revenue to support themselves. YouTube will now be able to run more ads on its platform without having to pay some creators in the process. The company confirmed to The Verge that ads still don’t run on non-co-creator videos, which are centered on sensitive topics. These include politics, religion, alcohol and gambling.
The news was not shared by members of the YouTube community. For years, the relationship between the creator community and YouTube over advertising revenue has been fraught with controversy. In late 2016 and early 2017, YouTube creators in partner programs were hit by a sudden decline in ad revenue as the platform struggled to contain disturbing children’s videos and other harmful content. Then, in 2018, the Logan Paul incident led to a change in the partner program, and creators began to earn more revenue.
YouTube doesn’t say how many creators will see ads running on their videos without paying them, but the company confirms that channels of all sizes may see ads appear. The company will monitor the impact on creators.