Why Youtube is going to change…Soon

Jennie Parsons, Staff Writer

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YouTube will die by January of 2020 if the FTC doesn’t reconsider the terms of a recent lawsuit against the popular streaming site. Basically, if you’re a kid’s content creator, you will be almost completely demonetized (you won’t be able to make much money, losing as much as 90% of the profits you used to make), your videos will not be searchable, comments aren’t allowed, you cannot have ads directed towards kids, your videos cannot be saved to playlists, and will basically be for nothing. Okay, big deal, right? Nope, YouTube has an algorithm that detects ‘kids content’ which is extremely vague even in the legal jargon. If your channel or video is determined to have unmarked kids content, it will be marked as such for you. If it persists, you may be sued for upwards of $14,000 and have your channel completely deleted.

Kids content includes animated characters, kid celebrities, celebrities that appeal to kids, child activities, kids music, and much more. As stated above, you may be fined if your video falls under one of these specifications, and is not marked for kids, making the video unsearchable and impossible to make revenue off of.

All of this is due to a law referred to as COPPA, which protects a kid’s right to privacy. Since the addition of cookies to the law in 2013, YouTube was under fire for the kids content, saying that they were taking the child’s information without explicit parent permission. (Remember having to ask for parent’s permission before going on the Disney website? Yeah, this is why.) You-tube had managed to avoid a lawsuit for a few years, stating that the content on there was for people 13 and up. A complaint was filed in recent months and provided proof that there was content on YouTube that was for children under the age of 13. YouTube was fined $170 million, and now has to place these heavier restrictions on content creators, stripping some of their livelihoods.

Don’t just trust my word on this though, here is a link to a very educational YouTube video uploaded by a lawyer.

There are many different petitions circulating online, and the most popular one I found was this one on change.org

This petition is requesting the FTC to reconsider the regulations placed on content creators. As of the time of writing, there were more than 500,000 signatures. This was the goal it was set at when I signed it last night. It is now set at a goal of one million signatures.

I do not represent the sentiment of the school. I urge you, as an individual thinker and regular connoisseur of YouTube, to consider signing this petition and to speak out against the strict regulations the FTC placed on YouTube.