No short video platform has yet figured out how to distribute ad revenue. makes life difficult for creators in apps like TikTok to make a living from their content alone. But today, YouTube announced major changes to its YouTube Partner Program to allow creators to earn ad revenue on TikTok’s competitor Shorts.
Short film makers can now qualify for an affiliate program that allows them to earn ad revenue on YouTube. The existing affiliate program requires YouTube users to have over 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the last year. Short film creators can now join the affiliate program if they have had at least 10 million views on the platform in the past 90 days. As members of the affiliate program, these creators will receive 45% of the ad revenue on their videos.
“I proud to to tell this is is in the first time real income exchange is Existence proposed per short the form video on the Any Platform in scale,” said YouTube Product Director Neil Mohan. He is right. TikTok started experimenting with distribution of advertising revenue, but its efforts seem to be more focused on the advertiser than the creator, as only the top 4% of TikTok videos can be monetized with the TikTok Pulse program. For the most part, the creators found it getting harder to earn money from the TikTok Creativity Fund.
Today’s news was leaked in a New York Times report last week, but now that it’s been confirmed, YouTube Shorts could become TikTok’s biggest competitor. If creators can make more money from shorts than from TikTok, they will have an incentive to create original content for the YouTube platform.
“Per to me, in key benefit from Shorts is what it helps to me achieve cargo from people as well as to pull people in my community. But my long the form content brings in a a lot of more income. So there is was Sort from a trade off,” said YouTuber Chris Collins (CallMeChris). “That’s why this news about an affiliate program coming to Shorts is so important. I can make a living with both formats.”
YouTube also said that this partner program update will allow the platform to license more music for use in Shorts, which could help creators use Shorts more often. Creators in the program will receive the same reward whether or not they use licensed music.
TikTok and other short video apps have yet to introduce a similar revenue sharing program because it’s harder to figure out how to share ad revenue fairly on an algorithmically generated short video channel. You can’t embed an ad in the middle of a video – imagine watching a 30-second video with an eight-second ad in the middle – but if you put an ad in between two videos, who gets a share of the revenue? Creator whose video appeared immediately before or after it? Or does the author whose video you watched earlier in the feed also deserve a cut because their content encourages you to keep scrolling?
YouTube has shared some details on how it will split the revenue.
“ads per Shorts are another how long the form. They are No attached to specific video, but run away in between video. FROMabout each month, income from all those FROMshorts ads will to be combined together,” Mohan said at the Made on YouTube event. “Hin Money will go to payment Shorts creators as Well as coating in expenses from Music licensing from in Share from Money dedicated to in creator.”
YouTube said in a press release that the money will be distributed to creators based on their share of the shorts’ total views.
“Lthis to me to be very Purely, nothing is change in terms from in importance from long form,” said Tara Wolpert Levy, YouTube vice president of content partnerships. “We are equally devoted to the idea to all from in formats what help creators to express themselves.”
YouTube also introduced Music Maker, is currently in beta testing. Creators can browse a large catalog of songs that can be purchased for use in their content, with music rights terms laid out in plain language. They will also be able to select tracks with a new revenue sharing option where both creators and music rights holders earn money from their content.
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