New creators just got some new rules. Last year, YouTube experienced one of its worst years in the public eye. The Adpocalypse, extremist content, kids channels with disturbing content and more. In response to that, they set restrictions on monetization that include requiring 10,000 views. They also added new demonetization triggers that have been criticized as being too heavy-handed. Well, they took things up a notch!
In a post over on the Adsense Blog, Paul Muret (Google Product/Eng VP) shared new changes to the partner program. You can read the article here, but here’s the most important part:
“Starting today, new channels will need to have 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time within the past 12 months to be eligible for ads. We will begin enforcing these new requirements for existing channels in YPP beginning February 20th, 2018.”
That’s a MASSIVE change that harkens back to the early days of the partner program (which became available to ‘everyone‘ in 2012). Also, they are also monitoring community strikes, spam, and other issues more closely. They’ll be removing repeat offenders from the partner program.
Is this a BAD Change for New Creators?
While this change does make the partner program harder to join for new creators, it’s not a BAD change for them. The reality of being a new creator is that you’re not going to be making any money from the platform. New creators get very few views and grow slower initially. A creator that gets 1000 views per month, would generate at max about $1 in revenue. With 1000 subscribers, assuming weekly uploads and standard sub-to-view count… in a year it’s $11 of lost revenue.
New creators should focus on their CONTENT above anything else. In fact, up until a year or two ago, it was common practice for small channels (under 10K) to not even activate their monetization. The content comes first, audience development second, monetization third. That’s why this change is not a slight on small creators. It’s encouragement to focus on developing your audience.
It’s also a change that will result in creators making MORE money. With this new restriction, the (rare) ad on small creator content now will go to growing ones. For new creators, once you hit that threshold to join the partner program, you will make MORE money. It is a positive change for growing YouTubers, and ensures that new creators are developing the best content they can. And from YouTube (the business) POV, it’s a reasonable one that should encourage advertisers to bring their ads back to the platform.
Share your thoughts in the comments – how do you feel about this change?
UPDATE: Here’s the email that tens of thousands or creators are receiving right now.