YouTube in the times of coronavirus

YouTube in the times of coronavirus

It’s perfectly clear to everyone that we are going through hard times now. COVID-19 caused a health crisis and serious economic problems on a global scale. The situation makes us struggle for our safety on one hand, and for job retention or business survival on the other hand (recommendations on how to save your business during the pandemic are here).

As being involved in Digital Marketing, we have to constantly keep a close watch on all Digital giants, for they are core pillars of the industry. Let’s have a look at how the world’s biggest video platform is getting through the COVID-19 events.

Delays and slowdowns

Recently Google informed users and customers about possible upcoming changes and delays in support responses and operating of non-essential services. It is a result of the quarantine and remote work of its employees. Nevertheless, the company assured that all its products would be active. Coronavirus events couldn’t but affect one of the main Google’s services – YouTube. Since the video platform sees an overall rapid usage growth in the times of coronavirus, it becomes challenging for the company to manage this traffic. Moreover, in-office staff reduction in many cities led to a significant slowdown.

Spreading false information

Earlier YouTube was accused of spreading false information related to coronavirus outbreak, this aggravated the situation. YouTube, however, responded that false info didn’t go under the company’s rules violation. The platform also stated that it tried to reduce the recommendations of doubtful content, which seems false or can misinform users.

And at the beginning of April, the company was again accused of benefiting from videos that promote unproven COVID-19 treatments. YouTube has already removed four of such videos; and in recent weeks, the company had removed thousands of videos regarded as misleading ones. But despite best efforts, it’s almost impossible to remove every false video related to coronavirus topics as soon as it appears.

Relying on technology

YouTube decides to take a drastic measure – to start relying on technology instead of human moderation in terms of content checking. The platform uses machine learning technology to point out harmful content, then human moderators re-check this content and take a final decision. But within the context of current events, office workforce reduction and usage increase, it becomes very hard and time-consuming. Hence, the platform is going to enable its technology to remove some content without double-checking by human employees for the next several weeks. It will allow the company to carry out all processes more quickly.

However, YouTube’s technology is not ideal. A lot of videos, that the system chooses to delete, are commonly not removed by moderators. And, on the contrary, many videos, that are allowed by this technology, are shifted away after human review. If YouTube relies on complete technology-based moderation, it will remove a big number of videos that don’t actually violate the platform’s policy. In view of this, the company warned its users and customers of increased video removals during the pandemic. The company’s CEO has also told that it would be possible to appeal such removals, and then they would be rechecked by the remaining human employees.

Allowing monetization of videos related to COVID-19

The company assured that new measures would not affect its recent decision regarding monetization of videos that contain info about coronavirus. As you know, previously, YouTube banned all advertisements on content related to the health crisis. But the decision to allow creators to monetize videos related to COVID-19 was taken at the beginning of March by the company’s CEO. According to YouTube, the virus outbreak has already become an essential part of everyday conversation. Anyway, the platform’s CEO outlines that advertisements will be allowed only if they are from trusted creators that have gone through a self-certification program.

Reducing video quality

Owing to virus outbreaks in Europe in March, the platform decides to reduce the quality of videos because data are necessary for in-home work; the measure extends to Europe, mainly to Britain.

No matter whether you are an advertiser, YouTube channel owner, creator, or influencer, it’s essential that you track all the latest events and their impact on the company. Only knowing the scoop and optimizing your activities accordingly will help you save your business at times like these.