Casey Neistat has had ads pulled from his video raising money for the victims of the Las Vegas shooting.
Following the mass shooting in Las Vegas on 1 October, Casey Neistat uploaded a video on 2 October announcing a fundraiser for the victims of the attack. He set up a GoFundMe for people to donate money, and said in the video that “all of the AdSense revenue from this video will also be donated”. Casey explained that the video was not about the tragedy, but instead about the fundraiser and helping to support the people affected.
Three days after the video went live, Casey tweeted showing that the video had its ads removed by YouTube without any explanation. Team YouTube responsed to the tweet explaining themselves:
We ❤️ what you're doing to help, but no matter the intent, our policy is to not run ads on videos about tragedies.
— Team YouTube (@TeamYouTube) October 5, 2017
However, a clip from the American talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! that talked about the shooting was uploaded on the same day as Casey’s, and (as pointed out by Philip DeFranco) the Kimmel video was not demonetised.
Your response is bullshit. It's not true. People are tired this. Be better. pic.twitter.com/XWh6eMVQWG
— Philip DeFranco (@PhillyD) October 6, 2017
Phil later uploaded a video talking about the situation, saying: “For some reason, Jimmy Kimmel is exempt, and you can’t even say that no-one saw that this video was on the internet – it was literally the Number One trending video on YouTube.”
Games Attorney claimed to have confirmed with YouTube that accounts like Kimmel’s “are setup to bypass their automated ad flagging system”:
— Games Attorney (@GamesAttorney) October 7, 2017
YouTube’s Advertiser Friendly Content Guidelines state that “video content that features or focuses on sensitive topics or events including, but not limited to, war, political conflicts, terrorism or extremism, death and tragedies, sexual abuse, even if graphic imagery is not shown, is generally not eligible for ads. For example, videos about recent tragedies, even if presented for news or documentary purposes, may not be eligible for advertising given the subject matter.”
Hank Green joined the conversation and uploaded a 35-minute long video talking about YouTube demonetisation in depth:
I wasn't lyin'! SORRY THIS IS SO LONG! https://t.co/ozMcBCXB5Y
— Hank Green (@hankgreen) October 6, 2017
A number of creators have complained about YouTube’s demonetisation practices this year, with many tweeting that their videos have been unfairly considered unsuitable for advertisers:
Tell me again how trans people aren't targetted by YouTube.
Both videos were restricted, so I deleted them, changed the file and title name pic.twitter.com/yzsXBjEsHd
— HoHoHo Ross 🎅🏼🎄 (@ChaseRoss) October 8, 2017
My Authenticity video has "mental health" "anxiety" "depression" in the tags. It is not suitable for YT adverts despite no "adult" content
— Gary Caplehorne (@oohgaryc) October 8, 2017
The Jimmy Kimmel Live! video is still monetised and currently has over nine million views. YouTube are yet to explain in more detail about the situation.
Currently, almost $300,000 has been raised on the GoFundMe. Donations can be made here.
Read more about upcoming changes to YouTube Gaming, including a sponsorship service. Alternatively, read about disabled creators calling on YouTube to review its ad policy.