6 Reasons Why Your YouTube Channel Is Denied Monetization
Why did my YouTube channel get denied monetization? There are a variety of reasons your YouTube channel gets denied after applying for monetization. Many years ago, it was quite easy to get monetized. There have been many changes to YouTube’s monetization policy and the requirements to have your channel monetized. Currently in 2021, you must have at least 1000 subscribers and 4000 public watch time hours to be eligible for monetization. However, that is no guarantee you’ll be approved.
We’ll go over 6 reasons why your YouTube channel may be denied monetization. After, you can perform your own audit on your channel to see if your content reflects any of these factors.
Your Videos Contain Copyrighted Content
From music to video clips, if your channel contains copyrighted material, you are likely to be denied monetization. Even if you have never received a copyright notice, claim or strike, using copyrighted material without proper rights is a sure way to get denied. Some channels have squeaked through the cracks and been approved even though they have videos with copyright claims. This is usually because the majority of content is original works and copyright-free. We recommend deleting or privating any video with a copyright claim before applying for monetization.
Your Videos Do NOT Fall Under Fair Use
Fair use is quite tricky. So tricky that we’ll have to write an entirely separate article about it. However, there are many cases where fair use is misunderstood by creators and their videos fall under technical copyright. Google provides a great resource on the four main factors of fair use guidelines here.
It is important to note that although some videos may not seem like they are copyrighted, they are. For the example of a gaming channel, simply uploading gameplay without any commentary or editing will result in denial of monetization. This is because the audiovisual content within the game is copyrighted. If you aren’t transforming that content in some way, it does not fall under fair use.
Your Channel Violates YouTube’s Community Guidelines
This is a tough one to determine, especially when you think you’re in line with YouTube community guidelines. If you use vulgar language too often in your videos, you’re likely to be denied monetization. If your content revolves around illegal and/or adult situations, you will not be approved. From spamming and misinformation, to violence and sensitive content, Google lays out the main categories of guidelines you must comply with to be monetized. Learn more about those here.
Your Channel Is NOT Advertiser Friendly
After the “Ad-pocalypse” in 2017, Google has been much more strict with the type of content they allow ads to run on. This is because advertisers don’t want their brands associated with controversial subjects, among other content. Having 1 or 2 controversial videos on your channel is not enough to be denied monetization. However, if your channel is built off of content that is deemed not advertiser-friendly, you can guarantee that you will be denied monetization. Learn more about the advertiser-friendly guidelines here.
Your Channel Is Inactive
If you were monetized at one point, then received a notice demonetizing your videos, it may be due to inactivity. If you haven’t uploaded videos in months and aren’t bringing in new views, your channel is not a monetizable asset to YouTube. However, if your channel is a part of an MCN (multi-channel network), this is unlikely to happen. Stay active!
Your Videos Are Low Effort
Let’s assume your videos follow all the guidelines and don’t break any rules, but your videos are low effort. Over the years, YouTube’s focus on their image has increased. This has stretched to the types of content they monetize, even if they follow every guideline to the bottom line.
An example of a low effort video is when a creator takes screenshots of posts from Reddit and uses a robot voice to read them. This is as low effort as it gets. To increase that low effort video into something YouTube can be proud of, you would want to include your own voice, preferably with a video of yourself, and add more interesting commentary, rather than reading straight from the posts.
The Verdict: Why Isn’t My YouTube Channel Approved For Monetization?
As discussed, there are a variety of reasons your channel is denied for monetization that fall under 6 categories. Before applying to YouTube’s Partner Program, utilize this resource and audit your channel to get rid of any content that may hurt your chances of being approved. YouTube’s policies are always changing, so if you are monetized today, that may change tomorrow at the drop of a hat.
If you have tried implementing these changes and still have not been approved for monetization, consider having one of our YouTube experts help you out with our consulting services.