Independent creators that cover the news on YouTube are already heavily disadvantaged by the site’s algorithms which boost “authoritative sources” (legacy media outlets that YouTube has deemed to be trustworthy) by as much as 10x in search and recommendations.
With the outbreak of the coronavirus, YouTube doubled down and committed to raising up authoritative sources that cover the coronavirus while automatically demonetizing independent creators for merely mentioning the virus.
After facing mass pushback from creators who feel it’s unfair that their ability to earn revenue on videos is being stripped when they talk about one of the world’s biggest news stories, YouTube said it would reconsider coronavirus demonetization.
Today YouTube announced that it would be updating its policies around coronavirus monetization but many Twitter users have slammed the changes and argue that YouTube is now creating “literal double standards” when it comes to who can talk about the coronavirus.
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Under the new rules, YouTube will be enabling ads for content discussing the coronavirus on a “limited number of channels, including creators who accurately self-certify and a range of news partners.”
However, critics of the policy have pointed out that YouTube is “picking and choosing who gets to talk about coronavirus” and added that when CNN and other news channels report on the coronavirus, they stay monetized.
lol what? literal double standards. great! just cancel everyone's partnership status and start over again. revert back to the old way and make it invite only. you gotta stop doing this to people!
— Tim (@TimCrosbyJr) March 11, 2020
you're picking and choosing who gets to talk about coronavirus? With you're track record, it'll be exclusively channels with horrible misinformation.
— tacticaljunk (@salmontaxi69) March 11, 2020
That's BS. when CNN and other news channel report on COVID-19 not only they stay monetized but they are also on the trending page. But when it comes to a youtuber giving safety advice they get automatically demonitezed.
— Aladin (@AladinSfn) March 11, 2020
It's shit like this that makes me want this platform to shut down
— Hayden Erwin (@HaydenErwin3) March 11, 2020
In addition to this selective monetization of coronavirus content and the boosting of authoritative sources, YouTube is also diverting views away from independent creators by driving users to “government sources” via information panels for coronavirus content.