YouTube Partners all around the world are up in arms about the new YouTube Red service. It’s the apocalypse and the lives of thousands of content creators will change forever. Why?! Why YouTube—why would you do this to the very core group of people who helped make you what you are? YouTube as we know it is over, right?
Au contraire, mon frere.
First off, it’s not that bad or close to as bad as it seems. I’ll get into that in a bit, but first let me educate you on what YouTube Red is.
YouTube Red is a new optional subscription service that will set back its users $10.00 a month ($12.99 for those who come in through Apple). The main draw here is that users will be able to watch their YouTube videos ad-free. The liberating effect of being able to jump into all your favorite videos without being delayed 30 seconds to a minute is appealing on its own right.
Additionally, YouTube Red allows users the ability to save a video onto their device for offline viewing (for a limited amount of time). The last main feature is that users will be allowed to play YouTube videos in the background while on their device. This means that you won’t need to have the video up and open in order to get audio (on your mobile device). Members will also get access to Google Play’s music service.
So why is this so controversial amongst the YouTuber creator community? First reason, the implementation of this service means less viewers viewing videos with ads. How do YouTubers get paid? By ads. Second, YouTube is launching a Free Month-Long trial of Red starting today (10/28) to U.S. users. Why is this bad? November is the second most profitable month out of the year for creators to earn from their videos (because of the holidays, duh). Now you can’t be too surprised when an army of content creators throw up their arms in protest and panic. The way this sounded, it could be a life altering moment for a lot of people (but that’s the risk you run making a living online).
BUT, it’s not as bad as it sounds. After the backlash YouTube Red stirred up, Google and YouTube decided to pay its creators from the trial period. That’s a pretty solid move, considering they will not make anything from the trial period. So creators won’t lose out from holiday ad revenue. Sweet!
AND as more details come out, this actually seems to bode very well for content creators. People who are Red users now have more value—of at least $10/month by default (no matter how many videos they watch or ads they click on). Regular (free) users would have to watch up to thousands of videos to be even equal to that $10 value. Let’s be honest, no one is watching over 3,000 videos on YouTube a month, EVERY month.
How does the creator themselves make money from Red Users? Easy explanation: with Red, viewership “Watch Time” is the key driver in revenues. The revenue YouTube Partners will see is based on watch time for that user on the entire site during that particular month. So if anything this boosts revenues for Creators as a viewer’s dollar value is increased.
For a more in depth look at how YouTube Red impacts YouTube Partners and Creators, check out this Seven Things to Know About YouTube Red Subscription Service.