YouTube’s recent profanity policy change: A balancing act between protecting advertisers and preserving creators’ freedom of expression

YouTube’s recent change in policy regarding profanity in advertising has sparked debate among creators and viewers alike. While the platform’s goal of protecting the brand association of advertisers is understandable, some argue that this change may be viewed as censorship and negatively impact creators.

One concern is that the new policy will retrospectively impact creators’ back catalogue of videos, as videos that were previously allowed to be monetised will no longer be eligible for ad revenue. This could result in a significant loss of income for creators, who may feel that the goalposts have been moved and that they are being punished for following the rules that were in place at the time their videos were uploaded.

Additionally, some creators may feel that this policy change is unfair because it limits their freedom of speech and creative expression. YouTube has long been a platform for independent creators to share their work and opinions, and many feel that the new policy may be viewed as a form of censorship that could stifle their ability to express themselves.

Others argue that this policy change is a necessary step to maintain a safe and appropriate environment for all audiences. They argue that profanity in videos can negatively impact the brand association of advertisers and that by not monetising content that uses profanity throughout or comprising the majority of the video, YouTube is taking a responsible approach to ensure that its advertisers’ brand association is not negatively impacted.

It’s a tricky topic, as YouTube wants to keep a safe and appropriate environment for all audiences and advertisers, but also wants to keep the freedom of speech and creative expression for creators. It may be that the platform should consider different methods to achieve this goal rather than outright censorship.

One possible solution that YouTube may consider in the long term is the promotion and development of YouTube Premium. With YouTube Premium, creators can produce and monetise content without the constraints of traditional advertising. This could be a way for YouTube to provide a platform for creators to express themselves freely without having to worry about the impact on advertisers’ brand association. However, for this to be an effective long-term solution, YouTube will need to build up a large enough user base to support creators monetising their content through YouTube Premium. Additionally, YouTube Premium allows for the creation of exclusive content that is only available to subscribers, which could help creators earn more revenue and build a dedicated fanbase. Furthermore, it could help YouTube to create a more diverse content creation ecosystem and help to balance the needs of advertisers and creators. Overall, YouTube Premium could be an effective way for YouTube to navigate the challenges posed by the new profanity policy and create a sustainable future for creators and advertisers on the platform, as long as they can build up a large enough user base.