How Will The COVID-19 Pandemic Affect YouTube and YouTubers?
Never did the world expect something as deadly as the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) to sweep through it. While many people are losing their lives to the virus and families are grieving, its effect on businesses cannot be ignored. The video-sharing platform YouTube isn’t going to be out of its shackles too.
Coronavirus is a keyword that’s searched on YouTube in large volumes
Lets’ face it: anything related to the pandemic, be it tackling mechanisms or number of people affected, is changing almost every minute. It is one of the biggest and most significant news to have hit the world in the present-day digital age. Billions of lives are at stake, and healthcare organizations around the world are bracing for even more dire situations. In such a context, anyone using YouTube to upload videos needs to be more responsible than ever.
Currently, hundreds of thousands of people are typing in one word in YouTube’s search bar—Coronavirus or Covid-19. Why shouldn’t that be? Everyone wants to know more about the virus, the latest news related to vaccinations and medications, and probably real-life stories of those affected. YouTube creators have now found a trend that’s going to thrive for some time and have been proactive in creating relevant content. They have managed to blend it well with SEO, as a huge audience is now looking for content on this keyword.
YouTube has grown to be a massive search engine, one that’s quite popular after Google too. The platform is always striving to accurately predict what users are searching for. Then they serve up relevant content that they wish to watch. As we know very well, whenever we type keywords in YouTube’s search bar, the platform will auto-complete the search term with some predicted searches. If we type “how to”, a few of the top search result show content like “how to make hand sanitizer”, “how to prevent the spread of coronavirus,” “how to stay safe from Covid-19,” etc. along with some other searches related to the pandemic.
One critical thing that should ideally happen at the mention of Coronavirus in a particular video is that the platform will show info panels and cards that are relevant to the user’s location that push them to trustworthy information. Since the accuracy of information is crucial during these times, YouTube is trying and staying on the right side of the topic. This measure is also promoting various authoritative sources in the platform’s search and video recommendations and displaying information panels on relevant videos.
Monetization and video removals
Now, YouTube is allowing various COVID-19-related videos to be monetized on some channels. The platform already has out comprehensive advertiser guidelines in place to lay down the type of video content that may have no or limited ads. Also, the platform has warned it expansive creator community that removal of videos would increase during the pandemic. Their systems reckon upon a blend of technology that follows human review. But since in-office has drastically reduced owing to the crisis, there will be automated systems removing some YouTube videos without passing them through a human review.
YouTube believes that allowing its machine learning technology to remove videos without human intervention will allow the platform to be quick in taking actions to prevent potential violations, as well as to keep the entire video ecosystem protected. However, the process of removing videos may land up removing content where there’s no violation of YouTube policy. When that happens, YouTubers will have to appeal to the platform’s moderators to look into the video and reach a consensus. In addition to this, the platform says it will maintain caution as to which content gets promoted on it. Live streams are most likely to be affected by this. Some content that aren’t reviewed by humans may not show up either in search, on YouTube’s homepage, or the recommendations section.
At this unsettling time, everyone is feeling the impact in their own way. Youtube’ primary goal is to provide information in a responsible way. As everyone else they are also trying their best to support the Youtube community. The gradual monetization of Coronavirus videos and policies are undertaken for staff safety are some of the ways that they are trying to fight the ongoing crisis.
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