YouTube's New Rules After The Logan Paul Scandal
Youtube has for long been a source of entertainment ungoverned by the same rules as TV or film.
Youtube is both the same place where one can watch a video of a cat and dog cuddling together on a bed of pillows, and the same place where violent and sexually explicit videos can be found by anyone on the net. For long this has been accepted, and the governing of the ethics behind Youtube videos up to now has been pretty lax.
Logan Paul, one of Youtube's most famous and profitable personalities, with a subscriber base of over 15 million, found himself in hot water recently after he uploaded a video of himself in Japan's Aokigahara 'suicide forest' where he is seen laughing and showing a dead body one can assume was of a person who committed suicide allegedly.
The aftermath of his video was immediate. Condemnation for his video came across all media platforms and everyone agreed it was insensitive, wildly inappropriate, and irresponsible.
After over a week of silence, Youtube, a Google property, finally responded and announced they would be punishing Logan Paul by removing him from a Youtube series and his partnership with Google Preferred. The effects of Logan Paul's video are still being felt because what that video did was place attention onto not just Logan Paul, but more specifically on the lack of ethical monitoring of Youtube videos especially by big name Youtubers who are profitting millions of dollars annually and whose fanbase are impressionable minors.
Weeks after the scandal initially broke out, it is still unclear what will become of Logan Paul, but Youtube it seems has taken a more strict approach to whom they will now partner with. The new changes will help Youtube partner advertisers with appropriate Youtube channels. More importantly, Youtube will begin monitoring the videos that are produced by Google Prefered creators. This will be possible, because Youtube will decrease the number of videos that it will need to monitor, by decreasing who can be a member of Google Prefered.
Membership into Google Preferred just became a good deal harder. Before, all a channel needed to have was 10,000 lifetime views to qualify, now channels will need to have both over 10,000 subscribers and a minimum of 4,000 watch time in the last 12 months. The new rules mean that smaller channels will not be able to make money until they meet the new criteria, but will still be able to upload new content.
Some are angry over the new changes because they feel that smaller channels may be small in subscribers and watch time but produce meaningful content. The new rules also mean that Youtubers who do satisfy the new requirements but who produces trashy content, will still be able to be part of Google Prefered if the human monitoring the videos deem it appropriate for pairing with an advertisor.
Although, smaller channels will lose out on the money they were previously making with their videos. The reality is Youtube needed to make these changes for several reasons. To begin with, the Logan Paul video is hardly the first video in recent memory that has caused concern. The old Google Partner rules, made it possible for Youtube channels who produce no new content to be paired with advertisors. And, as a company who is branching out it's services, such as with paid subscriptions and YoutubeTV it needs to put its best face forward so advertisors and the like will want to invest and partner with Youtube.
The current social climate is all about repairing existing social constructs that permit abusive behavior and insensitive people to flourish, and Youtube in it's own way is having it's movement to clean up house before its too late. After providing the world with immeasureable amounts of free entertainment and knowledge with it's platform, we as viewers owe it to the site that taught us how to cook, tie a tie, contour, find the area of a triangle in a circle, the chance to fix its shortcomings as a platform because ethical accountability in 2018 if it were a Youtube channel would be at the top of the trending list with a subscriber count on an ever constant up tick.