YouTube gives the green light to strong language

Kerem Gülen
Mar 8, 2023

YouTube has declared a relaxation of its contentious profanity regulations that were instituted towards the end of 2022. The company's recent statement revealed that the rules resulted in a more rigorous approach than initially planned. The updated policy now sanctions content creators to employ moderate and robust profanity without the risk of demonetization.

Beforehand, under regulations implemented in November 2022, any video containing profanity within the first 15 seconds would be flagged and considered unsuitable for monetization, resulting in the removal of advertisements from the video. This policy was retroactively enforced, resulting in backlash from certain creators who reported the loss of their monetization status. Nevertheless, the most recent revision seeks to address the concerns raised by these creators and provide them with more creative flexibility.

YouTube has made further amendments to its rules, as previously announced in January. The new changes allow creators to qualify for some ads, even when their videos feature strong profanity in the initial seconds. These revisions are not a complete return to the previous policy, but they do offer creators more flexibility. The November update stipulated that videos with strong profanity in their opening seconds would not receive any ad revenue.

In addition, YouTube has now specified that videos with moderate or strong profanity beyond the first 7 seconds will be eligible for monetization, except in cases where such language is frequently used throughout the majority of the video. Under the November policy, such content was not qualified for ad revenue. These changes are expected to benefit creators and give them more freedom in their content creation.

YouTube has responded to the negative feedback received due to the November policy by announcing a review of videos from creators who were adversely affected by the policy. The company has also provided more clarity on the treatment of profanity in music. The new regulations allow moderate or strong profanity used in background music, backing tracks, and intro/outro music to earn full ad revenue, unlike before when it received none.

It is essential to note that any profanity used in titles and thumbnails will still be demonetized and remain ineligible for ad revenue, consistent with the November policy. YouTube aims to address the concerns of content creators and ensure that their monetization status is not unfairly affected by providing more clarity on how profanity is treated on the platform.

The new policy, which has come into effect immediately, offers some relief to content creators, allowing them to continue monetizing their videos without making significant changes. Although the policy is still somewhat vague and does not address all the creators' concerns, it is expected to benefit a significant portion of them.

While the platform's intentions are well-meaning, retroactively implementing monetization rules on a platform like YouTube requires a delicate balancing act. Nevertheless, these new changes aim to create a more equitable environment for content creators, enabling them to produce and monetize their content more easily.


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