So it appears that YouTube is still doing the Bird Box Challenge when it comes to solutions to problems that don’t negatively impact its content creators. As written by our very own Killian Hobbs, YouTube’s algorithm has been effectively catering to pedophiles for some time. I highly suggest reading Killian’s article before this one, as it goes in great depth in how that was discovered. Since this news broke there has been a major backlash against YouTube with large advertisers, once again, pulling ads from the company. And in keeping tradition, YouTube’s solution to this crisis wound up stomping on the hands of the platform’s content creators.
MY 5 YEAR OLD SON: does gymnastics and is a happy, sweet, confident boy.
youtube: NOT ADVERTISER FRIENDLY
— Jessica Ballinger 💜 (@BallingerMom) February 21, 2019
Above is a tweet from Jessica Ballinger to Youtube, asking why all of her videos were suddenly demonetized without warning. YouTube’s response ultimately reveals its heavy-handed nature when dealing with controversial manners. YouTube has responded by tweeting that they had been deleting comments from certain videos as well as automatically disabling comments in general and sending reports on inappropriately commenting accounts to law enforcement. What they say next frankly breaks my head.
(2/2) With regard to the actions that we’ve taken, even if your video is suitable for advertisers, inappropriate comments could result in your video receiving limited or no ads (yellow icon). Let us know if you have any questions.
— TeamYouTube (@TeamYouTube) February 22, 2019
Now looking at this Tweet from YouTube, you would be correct in assuming that YouTube is actively demonetizing videos from accounts that have unfortunately even have a chance of being linked in their, to put it way too nicely, flawed search algorithm. This move is repugnant as it punishes the content creator for what people commenting on the video say. Now that we’re in a world where YouTube has broken THAT line down like the Berlin Wall, we have to wonder how long before they start doing the same to other content creators that fall the wrong side of controversy simply for existing in it.
Jessica Ballinger responded to YouTube by stating that she manually moderates the content she puts out of her children, and that she did not have the problem that these other channels did with the current search algorithm. She also previously asked for her videos to be manually reviewed and had this to say:
I can understand that you are dealing with a widespread issue. But these videos were then manually reviewed. If they pose no harm, then why weren’t they approved? And how does demonetizing content do anything to stop potential predators? pic.twitter.com/GZT5eeXfZu
— Jessica Ballinger 💜 (@BallingerMom) February 22, 2019
Even when manually reviewed, the videos were still demonetized and kept in a limited state. It was at this time that YouTube stopped responding to Jessica Ballinger. Why YouTube is demonetizing the content of creators that aren’t even a part of the problem directly is beyond rational thought.