YouTube toughens requirements to tackle problematic content

YouTube is to put tougher requirements in place for video publishers wanting to make money from its platform.

Staff will manually review all clips before being publicised amongst popular content and big brand advertisers.

“Google presents the impression of acting reactively rather than proactively. It needs to get better at acting faster,” said Mark Mulligan from MiDia Research to the BBC.

The new strategy includes stricter requirements that publishers must obey, including longer clips with attached adverts unless the publisher has at least 1,000 subscribers and more than 4,000 hours of content viewed within the past year.

‘Representing a higher standard’

YouTube said in a blog post: “In the last year, we took actions to protect our community against violent or extremist content, testing new systems to combat emerging and evolving threats. We tightened our policies on what content can appear on our platform, or earn revenue for creators.

“We increased our enforcement teams. And we invested in powerful new machine learning technology to scale the efforts of our human moderators to take down videos and comments that violate our policies.

“Now, we are applying the lessons we’ve learned from our work fighting violent extremism content over the last year in order to tackle other problematic content. Our goal is to stay one step ahead of bad actors, making it harder for policy-violating content to surface or remain on YouTube.”

‘Tools to protect children’

David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab, added: “Children are fortunate in that the technology available to them enables them to easily swipe and click to access entertainment or information from such a young age.

“In the modern world, access to any type of information has become easier than ever, leaving children especially vulnerable – not least because, although they can use the technology, they are far from being worldy-wise.

“Therefore, tools to protect children from inappropriate web content should become obligatory. We want to ensure that this freedom to explore the world can continue without sacrificing their emotional safety.”

The Google-owned company also noted that its new requirements represent a “higher standard” than the previous requirement of 10,000 lifetime views, which was introduced nine months ago.

Written by Leah Alger