How Will YouTube’s New Verification Rules Impact Local Content Creators

Farai Mudzingwa Avatar

YouTube recently changed the way verification on their platform works and it’s not clear whether these new rules will favour or affect local YouTubers.

Previously YouTube verified creators with more than 100 000k subscribers but all this is coming to an end. At some point in October, creators will only be verified if they have “a clear need” to prove their authenticity.

The new verification will look at the following aspects:

  • whether a channel really belongs to the creator, artist, public figure or company it claims to represent;
  • whether the channel represents a well-known or highly searched creator, artist, public figure or company;
  • whether it’s a popular channel that has a very similar name to many other channels

It’s not clear if this will be handled by an algorithm or whether human intervention will be necessary when verifying but a number of local YouTubers including musicians (Winky D) and comedians (Madam Boss, BUSTOP TV) who had significant followings might not get verification badges even after passing that milestone.

Is it important?

At the time of writing YouTube verification was not necessarily a big deal as it wasn’t in your face (as it is on Twitter) but YouTube is saying once it rolls out the changes the verification button will be more prominent. Whether that changes the perception of subscribers and gives verified channels an edge is yet to be seen but I personally doubt it.

One aspect that I saw being discussed by content creators was the impact of this on networking. Previous verification rules made it easier to network because messages and comments from verified users were more prominent from those sent from non-verified users. It’s not clear whether or not these creators will get verified and thus reaching out via comments or a message to collaborate will become harder than before.

Fortunately, verification will not affect monetization otherwise YouTubers would probably be up in arms at these already frustrating changes.

Could be good news…

Inversely this could also mean that these channels and local creators don’t have to strive to reach 100k subscribers – to get verified which is great when you consider that there are fewer people using the internet in Zimbabwe than in America and having creators judged on the same metrics might not be ideal.

Also read, Global Report: There Are 1.2 Million Zimbabweans On Social Media

What’s your take?

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