- YouTube reversed an upcoming change to its verification system that would have removed the verification checkmarks from many creators, including some with more than a million subscribers.
- YouTube said, starting by the end of October, it will update the application process for verification by confirming the channel’s identity as well as by ensuring the channel is “complete” with an icon, content, and recent activity.
- Users who would have lost their checkmark praised the decision after originally expressing concern over the previous announcement.
YouTube Reverses Verification Policy Change
A day after YouTube announced it would be removing the verification checkmarks of some creators, it reversed course on Friday, saying creators who are already verified can keep their verification.
“To our creators & users–I’m sorry for the frustration & hurt that we caused with our new approach to verification,” YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said on Twitter. “While trying to make improvements, we missed the mark.”
“We heard loud & clear how much the badge means to you,” she continued. “Channels that currently have verification will now keep it without appeal. We’ll continue reviewing those channels to ensure we’re protecting creators from impersonation.”
A post on YouTube Creator Blog echoed and expanded on Wojcicki’s tweets, saying the move was originally intended to curb impersonations and clear up associations with what the checkmark means.
“The idea behind this update was to protect creators from impersonation and address user confusion,” the blog post reads. “Every year, we receive tens of thousands of complaints from creators about impersonation. Also, nearly a third of YouTube users told us that they misunderstood the badge’s meaning, associating it with *endorsement of content*, and not an indicator of *identity*. While rolling out improvements to this program, we completely missed the mark. We’re sorry for the frustration that this caused and we have a few updates to share.”
Many creators praised YouTube for listening to their concerns.
“Couldn’t be happier that YouTube listened to creators about verification badges and that Susan personally addressed the issue,” LifewithMaK said on Twitter. “There truly is strength in numbers. Our voices were heard loud and clear.”
Thanks so much, Susan. This really does mean a lot to us 🔑— Ryan B. (@PrestigeIsKey) September 20, 2019
Thank you Susan 🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠🤠— LG Kiwiz (@Kiwiz) September 20, 2019
🤠👍— ƿ૯ωძɿ૯ƿɿ૯ (@pewdiepie) September 22, 2019
This is good— Jacksepticeye (@Jack_Septic_Eye) September 21, 2019
YouTube Changes Verification Policy
YouTubers were first made aware of the now-canceled change with an email shared Thursday, some of which read, “We’re writing to you to let you know that we’re updating the eligibility criteria for channel verification. Unfortunately, with these changes, your channel no longer meets the criteria to be verified.”
Notably, that list includes several prominent YouTubers like LifewithMaK, MacDoesIt, JaackMaate, Strawburry17, and Kiwiz. All of those creators have over one million subscribers, and Kiwiz boasts 2.34 million.
Prior to the announced change, creators only needed to attain 100,000 subscribers on their channel to apply for verification; however, under the new change, which had been expected to be completed by the end of October, creators would also have needed to pass several other requirements.
The first would have ensured the channel belongs “to the real creator, artist, public figure or company it claims to represent.” The second requirement would have applied even more strenuous challenges, such as “representing a well-known or highly-searched for creator, artist, public figure or company.” Additionally, creators would have needed to be “widely recognized outside of YouTube and have a strong presence online.”
Following the announcement, popular YouTubers criticized the move on social media, with many fearing the loss of their verification would translate into fewer views. Without the checkmark, they also feared their content would be demoted in searches. Notably, verified users also receive prioritization at the top of the comment section.
“This HAS to be a bug on YouTube’s end,” Kiwiz said. “I have literally been invited to YouTube creator only events and even have my own YouTube Partner manager. How is getting 15-20 million views a MONTH with over 2 million subscribers NOT fitting the criteria?”
Machiazelli Kahey the creator of MacDoesIt, a channel with around 1.9 million subscribers, criticized the platform after having appeared in a YouTube promotional campaign promoting black artists during Pride month.
“Hi @youtube if you don’t keep my channel verified I would not like you to use my photos as marketing purposes on your socials,” he said in a Thursday Instagram story. “If you want to use me to shape the face of your company you’re gonna have to respect me as a face of your company thank you.”
Several other major creators like James Charles and Jacksepticeye were not in danger of losing their checkmarks, but they still defended other creators on social media.
“Everyone getting unverified on YT today,” Jacksepticeye said. “It’s a slap in the face but try not let it get to you and demotivate you. Keep creating and making cool shit.”
Confusion Over Checkmarks
On the same day as the announcement, many users soon became confused on who would be losing a checkmark and who wouldn’t.
One such example involved Jake Paul, who currently does not have a checkmark. YouTube later clarified, saying Paul lost the checkmark before the announcement when he changed his channel name to a joke name.
People also noticed mega creator PewDiePie, who recently hit 100 million subscribers, lacked a checkmark on mobile; however, PewDiePie has a checkmark on the site’s desktop layout.
YouTube then clarified again, saying, “The checkmark has never appeared on YouTube mobile channel pages (this will be added soon).”
Still, users were left confused after noticing that James Charles apparently has a verification check on mobile.
Following Ninja Deal, Gamers Flock to Mixer but Viewership Falls, According to New Data
- Following Mixer’s exclusive acquisition of Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, a new report shows that the number of unique channels on the platform has nearly doubled, but viewership has fallen.
- In contrast, Blevins’ former platform Twitch has gained viewership but seen a decrease in channels and number of hours streamed.
- Last week, Blevins’ wife and manager, said he made the decision to move to Mixer because his chatroom on Twitch became “toxic” and because Twitch’s contract with him would have limited his licensing deals.
Mixer’s Growth Since Ninja Deal
A new report shows some of the contributions Ninja’s exclusive streaming deal with Mixer may have generated, including a major increase in the number of streamers and content on the platform, though overall views have decreased.
Ninja — whose real name is Tyler Blevins — joined the platform in August after leaving Twitch, a move that sent shockwaves through the gaming community, with many wondering how the switch would affect not only Blevins’ career but also Twitch and Mixer.
The report, published by Streamlabs and Newzoo, found that the number of unique channels on Mixer had doubled from 1.96 million in the second quarter to 3.92 million when Blevins joined in the third quarter.
Streamlabs attributed the massive gain to Blevins’s relocation to the platform, which it said likely encouraged other gamers to make a similar switch.
Because of the influx of new streamers, the number of hours users streamed on Mixer tripled from 11 million hours to just under 33 million.
Even though the number of streamers skyrocketed, Streamlabs actually reported that Mixer lost viewership in its third quarter, dropping from 100 million hours watched to 90 million hours watched.
Since 2018, Mixer has consistently risen in viewership, with this quarter tracking the only dropoff within the past two years. Nonetheless, the yearly growth for Mixer has more than doubled. Experts have also noted the third quarter is usually the weakest part of the year for streaming platforms.
Metrics for Twitch and YouTube Gaming
Conversely, the Streamlabs report found that Twitch suffered the opposite problem: gaining viewership but losing streamers and content.
Many have attributed Twitch’s loss of streamers in Q3 partially to those users moving to Mixer following its deal with Blevins; however, Twitch has been losing users for two quarters now. Since Q1, Twitch has actually lost about 2 million streamers and now sits below Mixer at 3.77 million users.
Twitch currently still dominates the streaming community, however, logging 2,551 million hours viewed for Q3.
Regarding users and hours streamed, YouTube Gaming has also seen a dropoff since Mixer’s acquisition of Blevins, but the number of hours viewed on the platform remained relatively unaffected between quarters.
The Mixer-Ninja Deal
While the report indicates Blevins may not have had a substantial impact on bringing viewers to Mixer, it is unlikely his deal with the platform will change because of that.
In an interview with Business Insider last week, Ninja’s wife and manager — Jessica Blevins — discussed why he decided to move to Mixer. She said part of his decision stemmed from toxicity in Blevins’ chatroom while streaming.
“I could tell, as his wife, the last few months on Twitch, he just didn’t seem like the Ninja that I knew,” she told the news agency, “He didn’t seem as enthusiastic, as loud, as hyped-up about wins and motivated to stream. It really seemed like he was kind of losing himself and his love for streaming.”
She also said they had tried to make a deal with Twitch but said they felt like they weren’t being listened to. She specifically pointed to the fact that Twitch’s contract would have limited Ninja’s licensing deals.
She then went on to say that Microsoft aligned with their ideals, calling it a warm and friendly environment.
See what others are saying: (Dexerto) (Digital Trends) (The Esports Observer)
Trisha Paytas Accused of Exploiting Transgender Community
- Trisha Paytas posted a vlog titled “I AM TRANSGENDER (FEMALE TO MALE)” and specifically claimed to identify as a gay man. In the video, Paytas said: “So do I think I’m transgender? Yes. 1,000 percent. Do I identify with my natural-born gender? 1,000 percent.”
- Among the reasons listed for coming to this realization, Paytas included not wearing makeup every day, not having a ton of female friends, being attracted to gay men, and having “penis envy.”
- Paytas received backlash from people who said the video dangerously equated gender stereotypes to gender identity and accused the YouTuber of trolling people for clicks.
- Paytas apologized for the wording in the video, and added that the intent behind it was sincere. The YouTuber claimed that this has been an ongoing journey since childhood and that a therapist is currently helping with it.
Paytas Posts Video
Trisha Paytas’ latest vlog titled “I AM TRANSGENDER (FEMALE TO MALE)” has landed the YouTuber into a pool of criticism, with many saying the video exploits the transgender community for attention.
Paytas opened Monday’s video by talking about being called names in school for having masculine features. The YouTube star also claimed to never love being a woman and described feeling most empowered when wearing masculine clothes and short hair. Paytas then claimed to identify as a man, specifically, a gay man.
“Here’s the thing, I identify with men better,” Paytas said. “People always think there’s something wrong with me because I don’t have that many girlfriends. Like, I love girls, I do love girls and I love their sensitivity and stuff like that but that’s why identify more as a gay man because I like guys but I also identify as a guy if that makes sense.”
Paytas added that the one hang up in coming to this conclusion was loving glam and getting dolled up. Paytas then compared this identity to that of a drag queen.
“So, in my head, I feel like I am a transgender female to male, but also a drag queen. That’s how I’ve rationalized it in my head,” Paytas added.
Paytas then listed several reasons for making the announcement. This list included not loving being the center of attention unless specifically seeking it, not wanting to wear make-up on a day-to-day basis, being attracted to gay men, and having a distaste for straight men’s masculinity.
Paytas also talked about feeling “penis envy.”
“And then the final thing that kind of brings it full, I feel transgender almost is I’ve always had penis envy,” Paytas explained. “Like, this sounds so crazy to say out loud. I just always thought my life would be easier if I had that part. That if I asserted myself I wouldn’t be a bitch, but like, a man.”
As far as pronouns, Paytas never specifically declared what to use going forward. However, Paytas did say that they/them pronouns are “confusing.”
“That sounds like plural people,” Paytas commented. “And while people think I am schizophrenic or have multiple personalities, I choose not to identify as multiple personalities.”
The YouTuber continued to talk about gender fluidity and the idea that someone can feel male one day and a female the next, noting that this should be more widely accepted. Paytas also added that the intent behind this video is sincere and not to offend the trans community.
“I know that’s such a misconception, that transgender people are confused,” Paytas said. “And it’s not that I’m confused it’s that I identify as both. I just don’t necessarily like the term they or them.”
“So do I think I’m transgender? Yes. 1000% Do I identify with my natural-born gender? 1000%,” Paytas added.
Video Gets Backlash
This video generated widespread backlash because people thought it could do a lot of harm to the trans community. Some were worried that Paytas was trolling to get more views, while others were just upset with the way the video presented the idea of being trans.
Pride.com wrote a piece on the video, noting some of the specific ways Paytas’ rational could be dangerous.
“While we’re always happy to support someone’s coming out journey, there’s a lot of problematic things to unpack with Trisha’s latest vlog,” the post read.
“The likes of which include: The fact that they don’t wear makeup or do their hair every day, which must mean they’re trans; That they’re “not catty” like “most women; Their attraction to gay men must mean they themselves are a gay man.”
“As many of us know, there’s more to being transgender than hair and makeup,” the article continues.
Many others were also afraid that Paytas was equating gender-based stereotypes to gender identity, and conflating this idea with a sexual attraction to gay men.
“Every single reason she gave for being trans was 100% invalid, offensive, & stereotype driven,” one user wrote.
“Just because you were a tomboy, don’t wear makeup, and have a fetish for gay men doesn’t mean your trans,” said another.
Drag queen Vicky Vox accused Paytas of using gender identity for clickbait.
Others did attempt to be more sympathetic with their criticism. YouTuber Jake Edwards acknowledged that some of Paytas’ language could be harmful, but said people should still not turn to sending hate.
This should be met with allowing Trisha the space to learn,” Edwards wrote.
YouTuber Gigi Gorgeous said she talked on the phone with Paytas after being incredibly confused by the video. While Gigi did think some of the comments were problematic, she still said she wanted to respect Paytas’ identity, transition, and journey.
“I firmly believe that someone tells you who they are, what their label is, how they want to be identified, you have to believe that person,” she said in a response video.
Trisha Responds to Backlash
Paytas did respond to some of the backlash that the video received.
“You don’t know me, my journey , my struggle, my transition,” Paytas wrote in response to Vox. “I’ve been with a gender identity therapy specialist for the past 6 months cause I hated who I was since I was 3.”
You don’t know me, my journey , my struggle, my transition. I’ve been with a gender identity therapy specialist for the past 6 months cause I hated who I was since I was 3. Think before you tweet , THIS is more harmful than me sharing my story.— Trisha Paytas (@trishapaytas) October 7, 2019
Paytas also clarified that this was not meant to be a joke.
It’s not meant to be funny. Because I don’t look like a traditional male on the outside , I’m a joke ? Men can wear dresses , heels and makeup u know. Close minded and ignorant— Trisha Paytas (@trishapaytas) October 7, 2019
Paytas also took to Instagram to further address the widespread responses.
“I’m sorry that offended you but that is my truth and my reality that I have been facing,” Paytas wrote in an Instagram story. “It’s honest and it’s the difficulty I’m facing while transitioning. People don’t have the right to be offended by my truth. Men reject me because I’m too feminine. It’s not fair but it’s my reality and it’s my struggle that I’m going through.”
It has put me in a severe depression. I’m sorry,” Paytas added. “You don’t know my struggle. What I face may not be the same for other [female to male] but its what I have to hear and deal with on the regular for years.”
Paytas Posts Apology Video
On Tuesday morning Paytas posted another video called “apology.” In it, the YouTuber mentioned Gigi and her video, and said that their phone call was very impactful. Paytas also added that the backlash the video received was not expected, as the intent behind it was genuine. Paytas claimed that this has been an ongoing struggle since childhood that a therapist has been helping with.
“I hated my breasts. I hated my vagina,” Paytas explained. “I hated going into the female bathroom. I hated being classified as a female. I hated being told to play with barbies and stuff like that.”
Paytas then apologized for any offense the video may have caused.
“I’m sorry if I offended people with my language and the way I said things,” Paytas said. “I’m so new to all of this. I’m so new to it.”
“I would never mock a community that I’ve loved and has loved me and has been so open and accepting to me,” Paytas added. “I would never mock them, I would never do that disservice to myself.”
See what others are saying: (Pride.com) (Cosmopolitan) (Insider)
Dobre Brothers Apologize After Underwhelming Meet and Greet Clip Goes Viral
- YouTube creators and social media users are slamming the Dobre Brothers for their lack of enthusiasm during a fan meet and greet.
- Critics noted that fans paid and waited months to meet the social media stars, only to be disappointed by their interaction with them.
- Lucas Dobre apologized in a tweet saying that the brothers had endured “a long 48 hours of restless filming and touring” without sleep.
Meet and Greet Video Goes Viral
Four social media personalities known as the Dobre Brothers faced heavy criticism online this week after a viral video showed a fan meet and greet that some called “awkward” and “uncomfortable.”
The video, which seemed to have originally been posted to TIkTok, was reshared on Twitter where it has been viewed millions of times. In it, a fan approaches Lucas, Marcus, Darius, and Cyrus Dobre, for her turn to meet and take a photo with them. However, when she walks over to the group, the fan is met with some pretty unenthusiastic attitudes.
The brothers have a massive following online. On YouTube alone, the Dobre Brothers have 7.7 million subscribers, while Lucas and Marcus – The Dobre Twins– have over 17 million subscribers on their separate channel.
The creators, known for their stunts, sibling pranks, and music, are currently on a 21-stop live tour. Internet users pointed out that meeting the brothers for photos is a perk featured in special packages that fans must pay extra for.
According to the group’s website, General Admission is $29.99. Admission plus a meet and greet goes for $75.99. The next tier, “All Access VIP + Admission,” is sold for $199.99. Finally, their highest and most expensive tier, “Dobre Army Ultimate Fan Experience,” costs $599.99.
It is unclear at this time what package the fan in the video paid for, but it had to have been higher than the general admission price.
After seeing the video, many took to Twitter to slam the group for their attitudes. “The dobre brothers do no desrve to have fans [if] this is how they are going to treat them,” one user wrote.
Despite the backlash, many have come to the groups’ defense and said that the brothers could have been having a long day.
“Yo we don’t know what’s really going on in this though. They could have been there for hours and hours and maybe they got some bad news just before,” one user wrote.
Yo we don’t know what’s really going on in this though. They could have been there for hours and hours and maybe they got some bad news just before. Like I really do NOT like the dobre brothers but I won’t judge them off this when I have no idea what’s ACTUALLY going on.— Hayden Taylor (@Haydensvids) October 7, 2019
Another said, “they work extremely hard to make their fans happy and if u guys were in the same position as they are u will be twice as exhausted…”
Do not hate on them they work extremely hard to make their fans happy and if u guys were in the same position as they are u will be twice as exhausted than them u have no idea what’s like to have no sleep for full 48 hrs like even big celebrity’s are exhausted so plz don’t hate— Maria (@Maria54059400) October 7, 2019
On Monday, Lucas Dobre apologized on the group’s behalf, writing, “After a long 48 hours of restless filming and touring then meeting thousands of fans with no sleep we were exhausted by the end of our show.”
The post was then retweeted by other members of the group. While some fans accepted the apology, others said the brothers should have canceled meet and greets if they were that tired.
The brothers even saw comments and criticism from fellow internet stars. Beauty YouTuber James Charles, who has in the past been slammed for selling $500 tour tickets, tweeted, “what the actual fuck is this,” later adding, “Being tired is NOT an excuse to not smile and give a hug to people who pay to meet you.”
YouTuber JC Caylen also tweeted “yo this is actually hella sad,” before noting that the fan probably waited months for this moment.