YouTube networks drop thousands of creators as YouTube policy shifts

The future of multichannel networks, such as full screen, Ritual, BBTV and more, is in doubt because thousands of creators are eliminated.

Multichannel networks refer to companies that work with hundreds or thousands of YouTube creators under one umbrella. The network pays each creator a percentage of advertising revenue (compared to creators who go through Google AdSense directly) and a higher CPM (cost per visit). Multichannel networks have always been controversial. With tens of thousands of creators working under one umbrella, creators may feel they do not receive the attention they deserve.

Even so, MCNs attract creators who did not want to go through the laborious YouTube AdSense application process, but several sources tell Polygon that some MCNs are unlikely to continue functioning within a year.

It all started a couple of weeks ago when the creators who worked with full screen began to tweet about being removed from the network, apparently without cause. According to an email seen by Polygon, Fullscreen told one of its former creators that they were discarding "a decision that comes from YouTube and is beyond our control." A full-screen representative then told Polygon that the original message was "inaccurate". Since then we check our emails to the creators accordingly. "Full screen ended contracts for" approximately 160 creators "on April 5, according to the representative.

The full-screen representative told Polygon that the revised email sent to creators whose contracts have been terminated now says :

The team here at Fullscreen is communicating to inform you that your agreement with Fullscreen, Inc. has been terminated due to the nature of your charges and because your charges may infringe the rights of others or may violate laws or regulations. Applicable regulations, including, but not limited to, the YouTube Terms of Service and / or the YouTube Community Guidelines, we believe it is best that we part company Thank you for your understanding and good luck with your YouTube channel.

thus, apparent messages from Howard Pinsky, marketing director of Fullscreen creators, sent through a full-screen Discoteca provided contradictory reports

"YouTube is forcing" all networks to eliminate creators who are at risk of violating the terms of service (copyright issues, deceptive miniatures, etc.), "Pinsky said. according to a screenshot of that message. "This is not a decision of the networks, but a YouTube decision, they are really starting to clean up the platform, the full screen (and other networks) have no voice in this, this is a YouTube decision. "Many channels were launched that posed the risk of violating YouTube's terms of service, even if there were no strikes."

Pinsky declined to comment when contacting Polygon to verify the messages.

The decision to What Pinsky referred to is something called the "Know Your Customer" policy, according to Jason Urgo, CEO of Social Blade, a statistical company that works with multiple MCNs, Urgo told Polygon by email that "YouTube is putting more pressure on MCNs ", pointing to the new policy, which came into effect on March 1, as an example.

The" Meet your client "policy puts MCNs in a difficult position, according to Urgo, who said that it pushes Companies to eliminate a large number of creators to continue working with YouTube.

"[It] forces MCNs to watch each video uploaded by their partners, or at least to have reasonable confidence that none of the videos they upload could violate or even approach the present or in the future in violation of a guide / YouTube terms, "said Urgo. "The way this applies is that if a network has more than 50" abuse events "(an abuse event is when a channel ends or loses its monetization privileges) within a 90-day period , lose the ability to associate with any other channel for a period of time.

"If this rule 50 in 90 is activated multiple times, the MCN can be revoked."

That means that the creators are discarding because to the potential threat they face for YouTube and the MCN, but these reasons were not given to the creators.

"Due to YouTube's changes in its partnership program and the implementation of stricter content guidelines, we are bound to restructure our network to ensure compliance, "says a filtered email sent to a former full screen partner." Your channel will be removed from the network on 4/11, and I really regret that we can not keep you with us, believe me, I tried ! "

Other cr full-screen effector affected, Justin Rabbit, told Polygon, too, was not given a proper reason for full screen why the network dropped it. Rabbit said he never received an attack on his YouTube channel.

"Every time I asked someone, I did not get a response or I got a generic response," Rabbit told Polygon by e-mail. "When I tried to ask more about what I did, I kept getting the same answer, my channel never had an attack or any problem since I started it, I obey every rule YouTube issues."

The new internal policy means that "the networks now have to abandon [everyone] but their main partners or attract more people to manually review all the content, which is not economical in most cases", according to Urgo This is especially worrisome for smaller creators, who faced another major obstacle before the "Know Your Customer" policy. YouTube introduced a new threshold for creators, requesting a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of accumulated playing time in the last 12 months. This was a radical change from the previous threshold, which requested life views of 10,000 channels.

SocialBlade has worked with thousands of creators over the years, and multiple MCNs such as Disney's Maker Studios and BBTV, one of the largest MCNs currently in operation, to help creators to partner. This allowed them to bypass the traditional process of going through AdSense to try to monetize their own videos. The YouTube policy now means that MCNs like BBTV are raising their own threshold for customers. Creators must now complete 100,000 views per month to be eligible as a BBTV customer.

"The 100,000 views [per month] is a threshold set by BBTV to limit the number of channels that qualify, because YouTube's new rule turns partners into liabilities and instead of being able to help a large number of more partners small, we have to focus only on the best, safest, "said Urgo. "From a commercial point of view, this makes a lot of sense in risk prevention, but it's really sad because we have always been in favor of the community helping the child to have the opportunity to do so."

This is not the first time The multi-channel network has restructured its creative program to appease the new YouTube guidelines. Maker Studios withdrew its support for more than 55,000 YouTubers after the controversy over Felix "PewDiePie" Kjellberg last February, according to the Wall Street Journal, although it was reported that the decision was in process before then. Maker Studios limited the number of creators with whom I was working to approximately 300, with those channels that share the same core values ​​in which Disney believes.

Now, multichannel networks are going through a similar purge. A manager of a popular MCN, who asked to remain anonymous, said thousands of creators are being eliminated from almost all major MCNs, including his own, and noted that thousands of creators have been eliminated.

"YouTube makes it impossible" the person said. "YouTube is trying to get rid of the MCNs to the point where we can no longer operate, I do not see any MCN operating within the next six months, it looks like YouTube is trying to break us up, we're at a stage where it's like the end of one was. "

According to the source, thousands of creators are being eliminated from MCNs, as MCNs become tougher talent managers. Similar to what happened with Maker Studios & # 39; post-PewDiePie & # 39 ;, where more than 50,000 creators were removed, it seems that the same thing is happening to all MCNs. Instead of MCNs being an entry-level partnership for promising creators, companies will work with a few hundred people who are already popular. Maker Studios, for example, represents jackscepticeye and Markiplier, two of the most important names in YouTube games.

"At this point, the MCNs only need to be dissolved before we are forced to do so," said the MCN manager. "If they simply blatantly say that YouTube is telling the MCN to disconnect the channels, it gives YouTube a bad reputation, the MCNs need YouTube, it's a crazy moment to be in an MCN right now, and it's crazy to think about what It will happen later, we do not have much left in the MCN era. "

Polygon has contacted YouTube to comment.

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