Written by Kimberly Cannon, Staff Writer
During the first week of September, numerous YouTube content creators posted on their Twitter accounts and uploaded videos discussing the issues of censorship and demonetization of their YouTube videos.
Philip DeFranco has been a YouTube creator for a decade, but on Aug. 31 DeFranco posted a video that addressed the possible shut down of his channel by YouTube.
Within his video “YouTube Is Shutting Down My Channel and I’m Not Sure What To Do,” Defranco said that YouTube had informed him that some of his videos were not advertiser-friendly.
DeFranco said that YouTube was labeling his videos as not advertiser-friendly and inappropriate likely because of his discussion of controversial or sensitive subjects within those videos.
DeFrano stated that 12 of his videos in the past had been demonetized, meaning that those videos had been deprived of their monetary value by YouTube because advertisements had been removed.
YouTube allows its content creators the opportunity to monetize their videos. This process begins by enabling monetization on the YouTube account and by creating an AdSense account for the YouTube channel. More detailed information about this process can be found at https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/72857?hl=en.
AdSense is operated by Google, and it is a service that places advertisements on content creators’ websites or videos, so that the creator can make revenue from their online content.
YouTube has a policy which outlines the content on the website that will be denied monetization.
DeFranco discusses the censorship on YouTube in a video he posted on September 1st titled, “Youtube Responded, But It Gets Even More Confusing…”
In this video, DeFranco said that the issue that many content creators on YouTube have with the administering of this policy by YouTube is that not all content creators that break the policy have had videos demonetized. DeFranco references to sexually suggestive videos posted by Smosh and graphic news stories regarding war posted by CNN, both of which still have advertisement on their videos though the content of those videos technically break YouTube’s monetization policy.
DeFranco said in his video that YouTube’s lack of clear communication with its content creators is the issue.
“My main concern at this point is that it seems like everything is too broad. People are putting up videos. They’re being demonetized. While they are demonetized, they’re not making that money. They’re appealing. They’re then getting the video reinstated for monetization, but they miss out on all that money,” DeFranco said in his “Youtube Responded, But It Gets Even More Confusing…”video.
However, DeFranco said that YouTube has the right to do this to its content creators because YouTube is a business with established guidelines.
The demonetization of flagged YouTube videos is not a recent procedure that YouTube is just now following. According to DeFranco in his September 5th video, “WOW! The Youtube Demonetization Fallout is Ridiculous, Biased, And Lazy,” it is due to a change made by YouTube, which has allowed YouTube content creators to see more clearly when their videos have been demonetized, that has led to the current growing conversation by YouTubers regarding this issue.
YouTube made the statement, “We recently started rolling out improved notifications in Video Manager to make it clearer … when a video is demonetised [sic] due to advertiser-friendly content concerns as well as to make it easy to appeal,” Olivia Blair of The Independent reported.
YouTube creators Luke Cutforth and Melanie Murphy both posted on their Twitter accounts on Aug. 31 regarding the demonetization of their videos.
According to their Twitter posts, Cutforth’s demonetized video was on the topic of his experience with depression, and Murphy’s demonetized videos were about her acne.