Note- This blog tracks the events occurred in the world of advertising which is related to YouTube.
In a new effort to identify objectionable content from its search database, Google started its army of quality raters to determine websites, YouTube pages, and other URL’s supporting Google who breaks the advertising-friendly guidelines.
So, what’s quality raters?
According to BusinessIinsider.com, Google contracts with over 10,000 search quality raters worldwide to evaluate its search results. These raters are provided with actual searches to conduct, drawn from real searches that happen on Google. So, they can downgrade any website or a YouTube channel URL and then automatically; ads won’t flow through it again.
Google, YouTube, Baidu, Yahoo, Yandex, Bing, Ask.com, AOL, Wikipedia are the leading search engine platforms at present. Almost all the web content that we see through typing in search engines are under the umbrella of these search engines. Any given search turns up just 0.03 percent of the information that exists online (one in 3,000 pages). It’s like calling the base camp of Mt.Everest as the final peak, without exploring 8000 ft. above.
Now Google leads the share of web search volume worldwide with more than 72%. (according to netmarketshare.com). So, this means, as per current statistics, there are about 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide on Google (including YouTube). And according to eMarketers recent forecasts, US digital ad spending will reach $83.00 billion in 2017, representing an increase of 15.9%.
Above statistics shows that, even though a few bunch of advertisers backed off, there isn’t going to do any harm to Google’s advertising fraternity. And as YouTube earned more than 8 billion in 2015, with 21% growth rate, we are sure that a few bad PR articles on Time.com, Fortune, Washington post, NY times will not create any dent in YouTube’s advertising friendly piggy bank.
The reason why we are discussing “quality raters” and “Advertising friendly guidelines” is because, now, Google is trying to manipulate others content monetization on YouTube and websites that fall on “progressive side” of political commentary.
Although YouTube got tainted with its fresh controversy on blocking the content from LGBTQ related channels on restricted mode; YouTube’s ability to “demonetize news related YouTube channels” is what shook everyone in its community. So, let’s focus on recent list of events that stirred the controversy of “YouTube removing the monetization ability” for politically vocal channels
March 20 – Strengthening YouTube for advertisers and creators
March 27 – Mediamatters.org reporting that Infowars is generating revenue
April 6- YouTube Partner Program Safeguards to Protect Creators
April 17 – Google canceling Infowars Advertising
April 18 – Google AGREES TO STOP CENSORING INFOWARS
On MARCH 20, YouTube announced a new update on its “Creators blog” that clearly explains the difference between the free expression that lives on YouTube and the content that brands have told YouTube to advertise against. Below is the screenshot of their updated guidelines for considering an inappropriate content.
In their blog posted by YouTube’s VP Product Management – Ariel Bardin; YouTube told that “Both creators and advertisers are concerned about hate speech, and so are we. To protect the livelihoods of our creators and to strengthen advertiser confidence, we will be implementing broader demonetization policies around videos that are perceived to be hateful or inflammatory. These guidelines include removing ads more efficiently from content that is harassing or attacking people based on their race, religion, gender or similar categories.”
On MARCH 27, Media Matters reported that although the new YouTube guidelines are dysfunctioning monetization ability of many YouTube channels, The Alex Jones and Infowars are still earning the YouTube monetization money.
If you don’t know, who Alex Jones is, a conspiracy theorist radio host who is one of President Donald Trump’s media minions, appears to be monetizing his content as part of the YouTube Partner Program even though Infowars’ content regularly violates the program’s policies and guidelines for advertising.
Jones’ YouTube videos and other content feature extreme anti-LGBTQ and racist commentary, and Infowars promote conspiracy theories that have encouraged harassment of families that lost children in the Sandy Hook massacre and led to a gunman firing shots in a Washington, D.C., pizzeria and none of them is correct or verified.
The irony here is that many progressive commentary YouTube channels lost their monetization ability in an effect of YouTube’s new “creator guidelines.” This rule removed all the monetizing ability of “The David Pakman Show” thus prompting to declare that their YouTube channel is now bankrupt as they are earning $0.6 from millions of viewership.
On APRIL 6, YouTube announced that they are adding few new review process for YouTube Partner Program, and made it easy for anyone to report an impersonating channel to help protect creator revenue. Thus, removing “The Alex Jones” YouTube channel’s ability to monetize its content.
On APRIL 17, Google finally announced that they are removing ads from Infowars website. In the same time, Alex Jones posted another YouTube video titled “Alex Jones’ Emergency Message To All Centipedes.”
Then on APRIL 18, Maxwell Tani of Business Insider reported that a vendor (quality raters) mistakenly told staffers working for the Google that InfoWars should signify as a low-quality site. Thus, removing Infowars from their low-quality site list, and helping websites like Infowars earn advertising money from Google through DoubleClick, and YouTube (in a way).
Although Google’s spokesperson distanced the company from the contractor’s instructions, it’s unfair to watch an Alt-right propaganda YouTube channel and website generate advertising money from Google, whereas politically progressive YouTube channels earn “zero” from their content.
The creator of The David Pakman Show even blamed Google for adding his YouTube channel under blacklist including other channels like “Secular Talk.” Below is the picture of a letter he got from his channels frequent advertiser who said that his channel is under YouTube advertiser boycott.”
So, what do you think about this situation? Should Google let these conspiracy theorists earn revenue through their alternative facts, or revoke the monetization ability of all those progressive talking YouTube channels? Do comment below and let us know.
Being an artist, movie buff and a media enthusiast, content writing is my career train. I am a proud alumni of Symbiosis Institute of Media Communication (Pune) and currently working for Vidooly.