YouTube hasn’t always been the best at implementing consistent penalties through its strike system, but the platform is now moving towards increased transparency and change.
In an announcement, YouTube shared a big change in its system. In the past, YouTube used a three strike policy, with each strike having a different penalty. Now, YouTube’s introducing a consistent penalty for each strike.
The strike system comes into play when YouTube’s reviewers say a video has violated the site’s Community Guidelines. That can apply to videos containing violent or graphic content, hateful content, threats, scams, nudity or sexual content, and more.
Under the improved system, YouTube said the first strike will result in a one-week freeze from any type of activity, expiring after 90 days. The second strike in any 90-day period results in a two-week freeze on the ability to upload videos. After the third strike in any 90-day period, the channel will be terminated.
YouTube has been criticized for poor moderation and unevenly applying penalties in the past. Most recently, the platform was forced to face its moderation issues after Logan Paul posted a video of a dead body. According to Buzzfeed News, the video was live for more than 24 hours before Paul himself took it down, not YouTube.
These penalties are way tougher than before, but that’s because YouTube is implementing a warning system, too. People will get a warning the “first time their content crosses the line.” The content itself will be removed, but there are no other penalties. After that first warning, though, the new strike system comes into play.
YouTube said under its previous model, 94% of people who received a first strike never got a second. Hopefully, those numbers will improve with a new system.
To make the process transparent for users, YouTube is also making their notifications clearer and providing details on which policy was violated. That way, people will always know why a strike occurred, what that means for their channel, and available next steps—including appeals.
YouTube will begin using its new system on February 25, 2019.