Over the course of the last couple of months, YouTube has done something incredible… not in a good way. They’ve taken the time to go through the 332 videos I have on one of my YouTube channels and decided that 12 of them aren’t suitable for advertising.
own the car, not the tree
For those who aren’t initiated to the process, if you have a Google Adsense account (Google owns YouTube), you can decide to monetize your videos and allow an ad to show up in different ways but in the same format you’re used to seeing on some websites or blogs you visit. All one has to do is click on a tab called Monetize and then put a check mark in a box and save; that’s all it takes. Continue reading →
One day last week I was looking at some of my videos to see if any of them had reached my criteria for when I decide to monetize them or not. Some people say to monetize every single video but I’m of the opinion that if a video doesn’t look like it’s going to gain any traction then I’m just wasting my time and the time of other people.
You know when you’ve monetized a video already because there’s a dollar sign next to it colored blue. As I was looking at those I noticed that one of my recent videos had a slash through the dollar sign. When I hovered over it I saw this message: “not eligible for monetization”.
That meant it was time to do some research to figure out why some of my videos might not be eligible for monetization. The best I could find was something saying that videos might be disqualified for monetization (via Adsense) for the following reasons:
Video content violations
* Nudity, sexually explicit, or strongly sexually suggestive material
* Hate or abusive speech
* Excessive profanity or graphic violence
* Promotion of harmful or dangerous activities
* Video thumbnails, titles, tags, and categories that are misleading or inaccurate
I knew none of my videos had nudity; even I don’t want to see me naked. Hate speech; I’m a minority. Profanity; I’ve never uttered a cuss word in my life (which I’ve mentioned multiple times over the years, in case you’re seeing this for the first time). And promote harmful activities; obviously they don’t know me.
I didn’t fit any of those so I researched further. The only thing I could find was this list of reasons why one’s video might be blocked, none of which apply to me:
* Video includes copyrighted content.
* Video is blocked worldwide.
* Video is blocked in some countries.
* Video has been taken down due to copyright strike.
* Monetization is disabled on your channel.
* Video is muted due to copyrighted content.
* Copyright dispute in progress.
* Video is blocked.
I decided to look for all the videos that they’ve decided aren’t up to snuff. Luckily it only came to 8 videos. These are them and what they’re about:
Diabetes, Doctors And Medication – In this video I talked about my last trip to the doctor and how she wants me to start taking medication to prevent something I don’t already have wrong with me.
Religion, Race And Terrorism – In this video I talked about all the hate speech that was flying around at the time, how religious people were doing most of it and how it connects with racism.
Why Riots Start – In this one I talked about the reason why black people were protesting all over the country because of so many killings of young black men.
Advice From A 50+ Person On Suicide And Depression – In this video I gave encouragement to a young man who, on someone else’s video, talked about wanting to kill himself, telling him that we all go through depression but there’s so much more to stay alive for.
Taking Unreasonable Risks – in this short video I used an example of something stupid I’d just done to talk about why people needed to evaluate risks before taking them.
09-11-11 – This was my recollection of my feelings of what happened on September 11, 2001 on the 10th anniversary of the date.
Is Your Online Content Decent? – In this video I talked about the reason people needed to make sure their online content was decent if they didn’t want to deal with the consequences of irking the wrong people.
Does it seem like anything is wrong with any of those items above? In my opinion no, but maybe I’m biased. In my mind, there’s either one of two things going on, one that’s quite irksome, the other maybe not as irksome but if true then YouTube (Google by extension) needs to clarify this point better.
The first is that they go off titles or keywords in making a decision that a video isn’t worthy of advertisements. I could see that in the two videos above where I mention terrorism and riots, maybe the one with suicide, but none of the others fit that category.
The second is that they might be trying to say that based on the titles they don’t have any advertisers whose products fit the titles or keywords mentioned. I could almost buy that one except I always see Google ads hawking different medications, I’ve seen movie ads about both depression and suicide, and diabetes ads are all over the place. It’s possible that the titles for the other videos might not directly hit any advertisers, yet I’ve seen tons of videos about cars and movies that have absolutely nothing to do with the video I’m about to watch. Still, if this one is their reason, they should at least own up to it.
One more thing. It seems that you can actually contact them to find out more… but you have to fit the criteria. What is the criteria?
I have no idea; all I know is I found a page, clicked on the link, and the response it gave me is that my channel doesn’t qualify for help and that I should look for information in their forum. Please tell me how a form is supposed to answer my question about a specific video? Maybe it’s because I’m about 250 views shy of 30K and I need more views than that to deserve special attention, but since when does customer service depend on how much someone uses a product, even a free one?
Obviously I’m griping but at the same time I have my wife’s words in my head once more: “If there’s a gimme, there’s a gotcha.” In essence, because I’m using a free service, they’re allowed to have their rules and really are under no obligation to tell any of us what they are or how they work, disregarding that Google mantra “do no evil”… if this can be considered evil, and that would probably be a stretch.
In a way, I guess it’s not as bad as when Google first decided to disallow Adsense on this blog because I wrote a post that had the word “cleavage” in the title, and then killed my page rank for almost 2 years because I ran some text link ads (which I was guilty of I admit)… because neither time did I actually care. It’s not that I overly care this time either, since I’ve only made about $10 to $15 dollars total over all these years (even on my one video that’s close to 11,000 views lol).
It’s just another little irksome thing that I suppose we have to deal with as long as we’re not paying for it. I just wish they were a bit more clearer in their explanations because it would be nice to know.