Have you ever been curious about how your favorite YouTube videos got so many views? Well, it turns out YouTube has a special procedure for counting views that you may not be aware of. As the platform has gotten more prevalent, the way they measure a view has changed. YouTube defines a view as a purposeful play of a video by a user. In the earlier days, content creators abused this in the hopes that they would get YouTube famous. Video owners were able to gain views by just refreshing the page and viewing it themselves over and over again. YouTube quickly realized that it was easy for anyone to cheat the system and get the fame they didn’t deserve. So, the company decided to crack down on suspicious activity by creating a new method of legitimizing views.
YouTube’s New Strategy for Legitimizing Views
In an effort to make it more difficult for creators to drive up the view count on their own videos, YouTube created what is known as a “view tipping point.” When a video has fewer than 300 views, the view count is insignificant, so YouTube doesn’t need to regulate these videos. Once the video receives 301 views, however, it is able to be monetized and moved to YouTube’s front page. The company discovered that they would have to inspect the views once a video reaches this number, which is why many videos will pause at 301 views until the inspection process is complete. YouTube considers a view to be illegitimate if there are a lot of views from one user (more than 4 or 5), a spambot or malware virus is being used, or the video is set to auto-play when embedded in a website. YouTube specifically prohibits users from buying views from third party websites, which is another common way to hack the algorithm. YouTube has the authority to take a video down if they suspect fraudulent activity, so be careful when you are trying to get YouTube famous!
The Benefits and Complications of YouTube Advertising
Youtube is becoming more and more popular every year, making it ideal for companies to advertise on their platform. Many smaller brands and businesses have gained recognition through YouTube. Since YouTube puts videos with the most views on the front page, any video can become popular, and it is an excellent opportunity for businesses and influencers to gain traction. YouTube advertising is also financially beneficial for businesses with a small advertising budget because so many videos are monetized – as many as 2 billion videos per week. However, it becomes tricky when fraudulent views negatively affect advertisements. YouTube advertisers do not simply pay per view – the monetary value of an advertisement is measured by impression. A viewer needs to either click on the ad or watch more than 30 seconds of it (or the entire ad if under 30 seconds). Thus, fraudulent views are detrimental for the video owner, the advertiser, and YouTube, because they all make less money when the views appear to be higher than they are. So the next time you’re wondering why your video freezes at 301 views, keep in mind that YouTube is trying to maintain an honest and supportive environment for creators, advertisers, growing businesses, and the company itself.
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