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Google will begin updating some of the YouTube advertisement policy on addictive drug related content this month. Google claimed in a supporting document obtained by Gizmodo that it is “expanding the monetization of education, video, or news material, which could include content related to violent encounters with law enforcement officers, recreational drugs, and addictive substances.” As a result of this update, more videos on opioid medications should be available for ads alongside.
Creators who are worried about this problem will see the basic improvements by reviewing a backup of YouTube’s old content rules taken last month to the new online guidelines. The guidelines classify applicable content into three categories: videos in which uploaders should open advertisements, videos in which uploaders should remove ads, and videos in which uploaders should open ads. “However, only producers who wish to use this form of content in the video can see brand commercials.”
The most important change is the inclusion of a new point in the first segment, which covers the video that will open the ad. This now covers videos of “buying, making, or selling products, such as homemade pills,” as well as “news stories on rising crops” that do not glorify substance violence. Advertisers previously had to choose whether or not to pay with this kind of content, restricting their advertisement revenue.
Any content, on the other hand, is strictly controlled; it would be completely excluded from YouTube’s video page, and advertisements must be completely closed. These videos are “based on use (including its impact), with no instructional or documentary context,” or they contain “advertisement of controlled legal products or substances that can cause such physiological reactions (such as marijuana and its derivatives THC and CBD).”
While these exact details have not been extended to all other pages, YouTube has slightly revised the wording of the segment explaining the collection of advertisers, which only includes material that focuses on showing or manipulating drug consumption; or in satire, Non educational or non documentary backgrounds to produce or sell addictive drugs and their paraphernalia.” The precise situation regarding legal drug use, on the other hand, remains ambiguous.
About the changes’ minor nature, they should make it easy for YouTube creators to address this issue in their videos without fear of losing ad revenue. This represents a greater recognition of certain “recreational” drugs in American society, with New York officially being the sixteenth state to allow marijuana for recreational consumption.