YouTube warns of ‘consequences’ for creators who misbehave in the wake of Logan Paul controversy

Key Points
  • YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said Thursday that creators whose actions impact negatively on its community will face "consequences."
  • Her comments follow controversy surrounding one of the platform's most popular creators, Logan Paul.
  • Paul published a video that showed the body of a man who appeared to have committed suicide in Japan's Aokigahara forest.
Susan Wojcicki, chief executive officer of YouTube Inc., introduces the company's new television subscription service at the YouTube Space LA venue in Los Angeles, California, U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017.
Patrick T. Fallon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

YouTube is working on policies that will punish creators whose actions impact negatively on its community, Chief Executive Susan Wojcicki said Thursday.

Wojcicki said the video-sharing platform is developing new policies that "would lead to consequences" if a content creator "does something egregious" that reflects unfavorably on other YouTube creators.

YouTube's CEO made the comments in a blog post that detailed a list of the Google-owned firm's priorities for creators in 2018.

In January, one of the service's most popular content creators, Logan Paul, published a video that showed the dead body of a man hanging from a tree. The video was filmed in Aokigahara, a Japanese forest known for an enormous amount of suicides that have taken place there.

The clip, which was taken down following an immediate backlash, ignited controversy for both the YouTube star and the website itself. Paul subsequently apologized for his actions in a post on Twitter, and YouTube removed him from its Google Preferred platform.

Logan Paul is seen on August 08, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.
PG | Bauer-Griffin | GC Images

Wojcicki did not refer to the Logan Paul incident directly, but said that the misbehavior of some creators could put the broader YouTube community in a negative light.

"While these instances are rare, they can damage the reputation and revenue of your fellow creators, so we want to make sure we have policies in place that allow us to respond appropriately," she said.

Prominent channels, such as popular commentator Philip DeFranco and comedian Ethan Klein of H3H3, have complained of unfair "demonetization" of videos by the media service. As YouTube has clamped down on channels that publish offensive and inappropriate content, some creators appear to have suffered due to its new restrictive policies on what content qualifies for monetization.

Earlier this month, YouTube moved to introduce even more restrictive requirements for content creators that meant channels with less than 4,000 hours of "watchtime" over a 12-month period and fewer than 1,000 subscribers would not qualify for advertising revenue.