YouTube is experimenting with letting creators sell ads directly to brands instead of using the platform as a medium

  • YouTube is considering freeing up creators to sell ads direct to partners
  • The move would mark a shift in how YouTube has historically operated
  • Ads are typically chosen by YouTube and played over videos 

YouTube is experimenting with a new format for selling ads that will let creators sell directly to their partners. 

According to Tubefilter, which originally discovered the test, its program is very limited right now and would only allow creators to sell the ads to brands that they have prior relationships with.

While in its nascence, the concept of letting creators have a more pointed say in when and to whom they sell ads marks a formative shift in how the platform has traditionally operated.

YouTube may begin letting advertisers sell directly to partners after a test that was first spotted this week

YouTube may begin letting advertisers sell directly to partners after a test that was first spotted this week

For one, it would allow creators to formulate their own ad strategy for their channels by curating their own partners. 

Traditionally, creators have been at the whim of YouTube which chooses which ads it shows over their videos.


YouTube says it doesn’t allow content or behavior meant to harass, threaten or bully others. 

It encourages users to report content or activity that they believe violate its policies. 

The site states it doesn’t allow the following types of content: 

  • Revealing someone’s personal info like their address, private email address, phone numbers, passport number or bank account information. 
  • Content deliberately intended to humiliate someone. 
  • Content that makes hurtful and negative personal comments/videos about another person.
  • Content that incites others to harass or threaten individuals on or off YouTube. 
  • Content featuring non-consensual sex acts or unwanted sexualization.
  • Content threatening specific individuals with physical harm or destruction of property.
  • Content featuring abusive or threatening behavior directed at a minor. 
  • Sexualizing or degrading an individual who is engaged or present in an otherwise non-sexual content.
  • Content claiming that specific victims of public violent incidents or their next of kin are actors, or that their experiences are false.  

As noted by The Verge, however, it could create disclosure problems in the event that a creator, for example someone that reviews makeup, is creating content about a brand that they have a financial relationship with.

Those creators may be required by the FTC to disclose those relationships, which is a stipulation that could create headaches for the platform on enforcement. 

It’s unclear how many creators are participating in the test and whether YouTube plans to roll the feature out more broadly.

If its other efforts at diversifying the ways creators can squeeze revenue out of their channels is any indication, it’s possible the format could actually go into effect at some point. 

Last year, the platform also rolled out ‘Super Stickers’ which can be purchased for anywhere between 99 cents and $50 by users with the the money going to the creator of one’s choice.

According to YouTube, the stickers are being introduced following the success of a prior feature called super chats which allows users to purchase a message that stands out in a stream’s chat. 

Like super chats, the stickers are being employed as a means to help creators churn out extra money from their pages outside of the traditional model of sharing in ad revenue. 





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