YouTube updates strikes system to be clearer, more consistent, transparent

YouTube simplifies strikes system so that creators can get back to creating. (AFP pic)

After sitting down with some of the creators using its service, YouTube redesigned its strikes system to be, in a word, simpler; now, on the first offence, a creator will receive only a warning without penalty accompanied by a clear explanation as to which rule was broken.

YouTube announced on Tuesday that it has updated the Community Guidelines to make the strikes system more clear, consistent, and transparent. To do so, the company worked with creators to refurbish the system with three main goals in mind:

Clear policies
Consistent enforcement
Transparency about what’s happening to your channel

To accomplish this, YouTube will now issue a warning on the first offence without any penalty except content removal, as creators typically don’t break the rules intentionally. In fact, 98% never break the community guidelines, and 94% of those who do get a strike never get another one. Policy resources will be expanded to offer more details as to what kind of behaviour or content will result in a strike.

Additionally, users will be provided with clear information outlining “why the strike [or warning] occurred, what it means for [their] channel, and the next steps that are available including appealing the decision in case [they] think it was a mistake.” Finally, when a rule is broken regardless of where or how a creator’s ability to create content will be temporarily frozen.

Before, different offences would result in different freeze lengths. Now, all strikes will be treated the same: The first official strike, which expires after 90 days, will induce a one-week long freeze on the user; the second, if it occurs within 90 days of the first, will result in a two-week freeze; a third strike will end in channel termination.

Email and desktop strike notifications will soon be clearer and more detailed — there should be no question which policy was violated. Additionally, the company will be adding new “mobile and in-product notifications” so that all necessary information is at creator’s fingertips.

The new policies go into effect February 25.