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YouTube Changed Their Partnership Program Without Reasonable Notice

Recently YouTube changed their Partnership requirements, so now we need 4000 hours watched in 12 months, and 1000 subscribers. This is clearly a breach of trust, and a serious failure by YouTube.


Edited: 2018-01-20 04:39

Surprised face at unexpected changes to YouTube partnership program

Recently YouTube updated their requirements of the Partnership Program, which is going to demonitise all of my existing videos and kick me out of the program. Maybe this will not really matter much in the long term. I will simply look at it as an opportunity to release some longer, higher quality, videos, and finally I might focus more on types of content that attract subscribers.

However, I still view this as a breach of trust, and a failure on YouTube's part. It is simply unacceptable. However, there is a 30 days termination notice listed in the partnership agreement, so according to this they did nothing wrong. But this notice is clearly not enough to protect the interests of small channel owners, and maybe it is time to extend this notice?

The question is if we can trust this is going to be the final limit? It has only been some months since they implemented the 10.000 lifetime views requirement, and already they are changing it?

I estimate that I am going to loose around 400$ this year – so it definitely adds up! I was supplementing my website income with YouTube, so I am maybe one of the few who got paid.

It has left me worried that Adsense will one day do something similar, and I guess there is no guarantee this will not happen. We can only hope they will be more protective of their publishers. It puts the saying into perspective: "don't place all your eggs in one basket!". I already got the notification when logging into my channel today (Screenshot below):

YouTube monetization, February 20, 2018

The new requirements is 4000 hours watched within a 12 month period, and 1000 subscribers. The change will not only affect new channels, but also existing ones, regardless of the channels history. Even well behaved channels will be affected. So, apparently, partnering with Google or YouTube is pretty much a one-way street.

YouTube is the leading platform

Currently, I feel uncomfortable about uploading future videos to YouTube, as it has been a strong reminder that we have almost no control over how the videos are monetized, or what will happen to our videos. I assume they will be available in the future. After all, YouTube is the leading video platform, and hopefully it will stay around for many years to come.

I personally find their new requirements very problematic. This means that smaller channels will be strongly discouraged from participating, and for those who only occasionally supplemented their Adsense income with YouTube, this may prove to be a major setback.

I am in no doubt that Beamtic will be able to meet these new requirements within a year or two, but I still find it unfortunate. Creating content is an investment of my time, and if that investment does not pay off in some way, I might as well stop creating new material. While the lost income in my case was below $100 per month, it was actually a nice income when combined with the revenue from the website.

A possible solution could be to embed more YouTube videos in relevant pages on the website itself. This would likely both attract new subscribers, as well as indirectly allow us to monetize videos. I still get the benefit of free hosting for the videos, but the money I save on hosting is minuscule, so that would be one of my last reasons for using YouTube.

YouTube should do more for channel owners

We’re making changes to the YouTube Partner Program. As a result, your channel will no longer be eligible for monetization starting February 20, 2018. Learn more

YouTube is taking a big cut of our revenue (45%), and that money should be spent on improving their service. One way to do this, is by hiring people to manually review channels, and having algorithms in place to prevent spammy channels from uploading too many videos. So, in my opinion, they simply have no good excuse to limit who is able to join their partnership.

There has been a lot of complaints about inappropriate content, and some companies apparently stopped advertising on YouTube as a result of this content. The problem is not with small channels, however. Maybe part of the problem lies with advertisers growing too concerned over where their ads appear. I do not think YouTube should give in to such pressure.

Unexpected changes

When they made the first changes to their partnership program, I thought it was a small inconvenience, as I was planning to create a localized channel. However, the 10000 lifetime views were far from impossible to reach, (with a bit of patience). So, I started preparing some localized content. Now I may be forced to upload this to the main channel instead, but it just does not really fit there, since it is in a different language!

The new requirements is that we need 4000 hours watched in a 12 month period, plus 1000 subscribers. This change not only comes without warning, it is also extremely unfair! Things like this should never be implemented with this short notice. YouTube could at least have given us a year to catch up.

However, I am also looking to expand the types of content on the website, which I think could open doors to new types of content for YouTube, and likely, it will attract much more viewers than basic tutorials. Who knows, I might even start creating animation movies, since this is also something we are experimenting with in my education.

You can help by subscribing to Beamtic's YouTube channel here:


  1. YouTube Partner Program overview –
  2. Additional Changes to the YouTube Partner Program –