03.26.2019

The Wild West of Kid Influencers Just Became a Little More Regulated!

by Les Patin

If you’ve been following our posts, you know that we’re fascinated by the rise of kid YouTubers, and how they’ve quickly evolved into a go-to resource for brands looking to engage with younger audiences. We often compare this world to the Wild West, as there are many challenges—yet few rules—in this new domain. Recently, though, YouTube put a new rule in place, disabling comments on videos that include minors. But never fear, we’re here to guide you through it.

Reinforcing safety is the number one priority

CNBC and others recently reported this latest update to YouTube, which is specific to channels featuring minors. The move came after advertisers pulled spending due to reports of pedophiles in the comments of videos featuring kids. So basically, every parent’s worst fear about YouTube come true.

We’re excited about this move by YouTube. It’s truly a win for everyone—creators, viewers, and brands alike—by ensuring there are no irrelevant, unsafe, or unsavory comments littering the videos that are meant to be by kids, for kids.

Impact on Brand Engagement 

Of course, many brands are wondering: how will this affect engagement, and the ability to measure ROI? While comments certainly offer a way for creators and brands to connect with their viewers, they simply can’t be monitored or controlled, which means that they can sometimes do more harm than good. There are many other ways to measure the success of a YouTube video – particularly through likes and views – and by prioritizing consumer safety, brands can protect their integrity and reinforce their commitment to their customers above all.

Now that this new rule has been in effect for nearly a month, we are seeing that YouTube is allowing some creators to reactivate comments, with a request that they actively moderate them and keep predatory content off their pages. Of course, this still means there has to be a good amount of oversight. As a brand, if you’re partnering with a kid YouTuber that does have comments enabled, we recommend asking upfront about their practices regarding moderation and removal of inappropriate content.

Ultimately, responsibility in this space falls on everyone—parents, brands, agencies and platforms alike. By taking the right steps, we can ensure that we stay true to the purpose of it all: having fun and telling stories.

To discuss how our team can help your brand authentically engage with influencers and kid YouTubers, please reach out here: Julia@resoundmarketing.com