YouTube Partner Program changes kick in today that effect smaller and new YouTube Creators who don’t meet a specific criteria as originally announced in January 2018. As of today, the new rules for Creators and new YouTube channels require at least 4,000 hours of watch time of all posted videos over the past 12 months AND a minimum 1,000 subscribers. Anyone who hasn’t reached these targets, my Savage Lettuce channel included, will nolonger be able to monetize any videos associated with their channel.

Changes were made to address the wave of platform abusers who learned to leverage the algorithms and loopholes with questionable content that led to recent negative public relations blows to YouTube’s brand. As quoted from their email to creators sent out today:

We made these changes to address a spike in abuse on YouTube by bad actors like spammers, impersonators, and re-uploaders. Our goal is to ensure a healthy ecosystem where original creators can grow and thrive.

As of today, your channel, … will no longer have access to monetization tools associated with YPP because it doesn’t meet the new threshold of 4,000 hours of watch time within the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers. If you meet the new threshold at some point in the future, you’ll be automatically re-evaluated for YPP. The reviews typically take 1-2 weeks.

For more details, watch the video below titled “Burning Questions: YouTube Partner Program Changes“:

Source: YouTube Creator Academy

Video content will be king in 2018

The importance of this development comes on the heels of upward trends that seen more and more online content shift its focus from static image based ads to more immersive video ads and content. The initial surge of video content in 2017, along with the push for video from the big social media players, including Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, means that content created for video will be exploding in 2018.

This then opens up huge opportunity for me to begin exploring video content creation in more depth. Admittedly, even though I’ve had a YouTube channel since the early days way back in 2006, my posting has been far from consistent and featured only videos which I felt was interesting at the time. Comprised mostly of CNE Air Show footage for a few years it has been at least a couple years since posting anything of substance and at best I would have earned only a few dollars a year in ad revenue.

However, in light of the new changes, I am taking this as an opportunity to start fresh and build the Savage Lettuce channel into its own brand. As much as this will be a learning experience to experiment in video content creation and optimization strategies, it will also be a step closer in developing some of the ideas that have been brewing in my brain for years.

I’ll be discussing these changes and ideas further in a future blog post as I get closer to a spring 2018 relaunch of the Savage Lettuce brand strategy as a whole – stay tuned!