YouTube Updates Controversial Topic Ad Guidelines

YouTube has updated its advertiser-friendly content guidelines regarding controversial issues like sexual and domestic abuse, abortions, and eating disorders.

These topics in videos can become a helpful resource. The idea is to allow creators to earn more ad revenue on content discussing these topics such as abortion and adult sexual abuse. Creators with content that discusses these topics without going into graphic details can fully monetize their videos.

YouTube refers to these video topics as controversial, but non-descriptive and non-graphic.

Content that focuses on eating disorders and shares triggers will not receive ad revenue, such as binge eating, hiding and hording, and abusing laxatives.

Informational, educational and documentary, and survivor content that reference an eating disorder will not be impacted, but brands should carefully consider ad placement options to determine if they wish to have products or services promoted alongside content discussing these issues.



The changes were prompted by feedback from the community, claiming that they receive “more yellow icons” than others when their content references controversial topics.

The yellow icon next to a YouTube video means the video is not suitable for all advertisers or has been fully demonetized because it does not meet YouTube's advertiser-friendly content guidelines. Sometimes it can run limited advertisements or no ads from advertisers.

Other monetization icons include a green icon -- which means monetization is on ad the video is ready to publish -- and a red icon, which means monetization is turned on, but there is a copyright claim on the video so it cannot be monetized. An orange icon means the video is either in need of review or not fully suitable for every advertiser on YouTube.

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