Welcome to the know, I’m Ashley Jenkins, And I’m Gus Sorola. Is YouTube threatening the livelihoods of some of its biggest content creators? Well, some say yes, and they’ve only been making a fraction of the money they used to after YouTube changed the way it monetizes videos, And they say that could end up forcing them off the platform entirely. This an issue that’s been going on for months now, and it’s pitting YouTube against some of its most popular personalities, And it’s another sign that the ‘Wild West’ days of internet videos might be coming to an end, as advertisers get increasingly skittish about what videos they are associated with. Time to hang up the ten-gallon hat, guys.. Take my spurs off. But a lot of content creators say that, in addition to trying to make advertisers happy, YouTube’s now gotten extremely conservative With which videos it will monetize, even if they haven’t had a complaint about a particular video. The folks behind the popular channel H3H3 Productions, which has more than 3.8 million subscribers, posted a video yesterday, blasting YouTube for its new advertiser-friendly policies and, more interestingly, They say they’re now only making a tiny fraction of the money they used to make from advertising. And they say those changes are forcing them to move on to other ways of making money. While Ethan and Hila Klein, who make videos for H3H3 Productions, say they’re not giving up on Youtube, They say they’ll be cutting back drastically on the number of videos they post each week. So, how did all this get started? How did we even get to this dark place? If you haven’t been paying a whole bunch of attention- And we don’t really blame you, if you’re not a creator, it’s probably not directly impacting you at this point- YouTube and its parent company, Google, have come under a lot of scrutiny after several reports That ads were running alongside YouTube videos that were promoting hate speech, and terrorism, all kinds of terrible stuff. That prompted major advertisers like Pepsi, Verizon, Walmart, and others to completely ditch the platform; Some even completely left Google’s entire ad network. You think they would’ve given them a Pepsi and they would have calmed down. Right? That’s obviously a big problem for Google, which makes up 90% of its revenue from advertisers, according to a report from Wired. But it has a scale problem when it comes to YouTube videos: Users upload nearly 600,000 hours daily to the platform, Which would require a ton of people to watch it manually. We did the math on this at one point, and they’d need somewhere between like 70-100,000 employees to try to watch every minute of YouTube that’s uploaded. And that’s as it stands right now, that doesn’t account for the growth. Yeah, it’s pretty insane. Instead, Google said it’s working on developing artificially intelligent content filters That can flag offensive videos and try to help them manage this huge problem, And it’s hired a bunch of people to try to watch as many videos as they can and flag offensive material, So that it’s AI filters can learn what to filter out, and what to keep ads off of. So if you wanted to apply for this job watching YouTube videos all day, like, y’know, where do you… Where do you sign up, right? Are they just, like, on Craigslist? Yeah, but you have to watch all the shitty ones. It would look like a scam. [Both] “Watch YouTube videos at home all day and make money! Get paid!” YouTubers are saying that YouTube is cracking down way, way too hard on what kind of videos can be monetized. Ethan Klein at H3H3 Productions says that, of his last eight videos, only one has been normally monetized. Videos that weren’t monetized included one that involved urination, although, it was faked, Another titled ‘Christian Moms Against Dabbing’. Klein said “Well, I think, I mean, the- it’s because the real crime here is dabbing, I think.” Klein said that he thinks the latter video was flagged simply because the word ‘Christian’ was in the title- How offensive. -He’s not entirely sure, it’s speculation, but that’s his theory, and, ironically, that video was an attempt to make something explicitly brand-friendly, he said. “To bring brands back,” he said, “YouTube has given them the tools to keep ads off anything they might think are controversial.” But he added: “It’s so blunt and it’s so stupid that it is destroying our channel and our livelihoods.” “YouTube is now more conservative than Nickelodeon,” he said, and as a result, He said that his videos are only making about 16 cents on the Dollar compared to what they made before YouTube cracked down. Klein said he hasn’t received any communication from YouTube about what prompted certain videos to get demonetized. Yeah, YouTube- Communication isn’t YouTube’s strong suit. He feels like comedy channels like his are now getting punished and unfairly lumped in with racist videos and terrorist propaganda. He said, “I can’t help but feel like YouTube is capitalizing on this moment to clean house, And just get rid of the channels that they never wanted to begin with.” While Klein said that H3H3 will ultimately be fine, because they’re a big channel and still make plenty of money, the new guidelines mean That no new channels will ever get popular again if they have even remotely questionable content, And out-and-out raunchy channels, like Filthy Frank, can probably kiss all their ad revenue goodbye. Klein and his wife said they will still make YouTube videos, but a lot less frequently, like maybe around one a week instead, versus three, which raises the question; If a YouTuber can’t make money off their videos, then what other possible revenue streams are out there? Well, we’re glad you asked. That’s an interesting question. One option that’s suggested by many of H3H3’s viewers is starting a Patreon account. That allows fans to directly support content creators with monthly contributions, and is commonly used by podcasters. Klein said that he’s also looking into doing live tours and also starting to do stand-up, which, That latter might not be as lucrative as he thinks, but hey, you know good luck out there. They’re also moving their H3- Brian, our- our resident stand-up comedian shakes his head sadly and continues to- and continues to not afford food. Brian: “And still making 20 bucks a show.” Keep typing! They’re also moving their H3 podcast to Twitch. Yeah, but um, you know a friend of RoosterTeeth- kind of funny, They do all their stuff through Patreon, and they love that as their model. We have our own, it’s our RoosterTeeth First program where people can sign up and get Content early, or get exclusive content, stuff like that, like really diversifying, or merch, please buy our t-shirts. Y’know. Ethan Klein admitted that H3h3 had possibly gotten too comfortable, and said that the advertising changes have been a bit of a wake-up call for them to try new things. This is obviously just one in a long line of issues that YouTubers have had with the platform; There was a subscriber bug in which YouTubers said people were mysteriously be unsubscribed from their channels- Which we still hear about on occasion. Yes, and then YouTube recently apologized for its restricted mode filters, which were flagging tons of LGBTQ content as not safe for kids. So on the one hand, you have a platform that’s famous for making changes and not communicating them very effectively- Not hard to see why a lot of content creators are, yet again, frustrated, and may feel like they’re being marginalized by YouTube, And that the platform is popular largely because so many creators flocked to it and spent their time and their effort making content then for YouTube to sell. On the other hand, brands are naturally going to be concerned about where their ads pop up. Any consumer product wants to be marketed to the widest possible audience, and nobody wants to pop up next to a racist video. And Google needs that sweet, sweet advertiser money, So it definitely seems like they’re cracking down harder than ever. Yeah, so time will tell whether or not Google’s new outlines will force content creators elsewhere- Maybe there will be a new YouTube Mecca? Or if they’ll just find different ways to monetize their audiences, one thing is for sure, though. The days of just getting to make whatever you want and getting ad money for it are definitely over. Advertisers are paying more and more attention, and- As much as we love being able to monetize videos, and put a video out, and enough people watch it, And it gets all these ad impressions that we don’t have to do anything about, and then yeah, The money just, you know, comes in, we keep the lights on. We don’t- you know we, we can’t force the brands to choose to give our videos money, and that’s, that’s like the tough thing, right? Is: Does everyone deserves to make money? Sure; Do the brands deserve to decide not to spend it? Yeah, they do.. What do you think of YouTubers’ latest fight with the platform? Is YouTube purposely trying to drive some channels off the platform? Sound off in the comments. And for all your news on “What YouTube did wrong this week,” make sure you like this video and subscribe to The Know. Because there will be something next week, and the week after, and the week after. And like my video: Gus for Dabs. Plea- don’t- No. (Everyone laughing in the background) (Trying to clap in unison with background person) Damn it. I’ve been good for a long time. Kayden. Champ.