January is here and now it’s finally time to implement the YouTube COPPA Policy. Back in September, YouTube reached a $170 million settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that let itself off the hook for any past violations of Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) on the platform.
The violations because YouTube was not able to verify the age of its users. In this scenario, the children under 13 were able to access age-inappropriate content and their personal data was collected in the process against the COPPA provisions.
To ensure its business interests that will not be harmed by any future violations, with this settlement YouTube accepted FTC’s demands and outline new rules that will come into effect on January 1 and this is pretty much wholesale shift all of the responsibility to the creators.
YouTube COPPA Policy
As per the settlement, YouTubers will manually flag existing videos and any new upload as “child-directed”. But it became obvious that YouTube would not even provide proper guidelines about what’s should be considered “child-directed” content and how it will be identified.
The settlement took place in September but it took YouTube until December just three weeks before the new rules came into effect – to “contact the FTC” for seeking clarifications in an apparent attempt to perhaps mitigate the potential income losses and legal trouble that creator can suffer if a COPPAcalypse is manifest.
This latest “apocalypse” on YouTube will not affect the company but creators. This one has the potential to cause damage to a large number of YouTubers by reducing their revenues on the platform. This is because of how broad the very definition “child-directed” and “child-attractive”. This could be anything a child shows an interest in regardless of a creator’s intent.
Note that if the video is labeled as such, YouTubers can say goodbye to lucrative personalized add that must be switched off to protect children’s personal data. This will remove 60 to 90 percent of revenues from such videos as seen in the tests.
Furthermore, if the content is not labeled as “child-directed” and it is found to be that? YouTube’s settlement with the FTC state that only creators individually will be responsible for breaking the law.
YouTube has agreed to the new approach that the giant has no problem throwing creators under the bus if needed. This may be very disappointing for many of the creators.
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