Wrestling Youtube Channels Affected By Restricted Mode

Since March of this year, Youtube was hit with a few controversies due to the content on their site. Some of it involving hate speech and other just non family friend content. Because of this it was widely reported that big advertisers were pulling out due to the current climate of that social justice movements for decades have been strengthening. While Google may be claiming that these problems are “very very very small” and that the ad controversies will be rectified. They have slowly been rolling out changes, such as channels not being able to monetize unless they hit a certain threshold for views.

This affects wrestling also because of the restricted mode. This feature has been around since roughly late 2015 though I believe the option was there earlier. It is supposed to help restrict the viewing of certain content from children. But in the wake of these advertising issues, pro wrestling somehow made it onto the list of content.

A video spoke about this in the middle of March, you can view it at the bottom of this article.

Today it seems that wrestling channels have been hit to a large degree, losing almost all of their revenue. Two of the first promotions to speak on this that I’ve seen are Beyond Wrestling and AIW. Beyond Wrestling answered some questions during their Q & A on Twitter. Here are a few of the excerpts:

Luckily BeyonDemand remains unaffected because it is driven by subscriptions. It is their free content that is taking the major hit and thus their promotion as well. Drew stated that in order to make up the revenue, an extra 250 DVDs would have to be sold on SMV every month. Depending on price that is between $2500-$3750 if not more.

AIW issued the following statement on their Facebook page:

it appears YouTube has deemed all wrestling related content not advertiser friendly and our revenue stream from YouTube is pretty much nonexistent as we type this. This has been a very important piece to the puzzle for not only us but several Independent wrestling promotions such as Beyond Wrestling for several years as we counted on that additional income to stay in business and keep our bills paid. To most this may sound ridiculous that YouTube could be such a large part of promoting Independent Wrestling but to put this in perspective we would need to sell hundreds more DVD’s and MP4’s a month to make up for this lost stream of revenue. We ask that you please support anyway you can while we figure out what our next step is.

This is a big issue for certain promotions such as What Culture Pro Wrestling and CWf Mid Atlantic also who have put tons of content up for free gaining thousands of hits. This clearly is going to affect other promotions as well. We encourage promotions to contact us at cgstong@mailbag.com and let us know your thoughts. PWP will be reaching out and following this story more. ROH and WWE were also affected by this as I’m sure Impact Wrestling was as well. ROHworld.com has an article up about the possible affects on the Women of Honor and their postings on Youtube.

UPDATE

CWF Mid Atlantic figure Grant Sawyer tweeted the following in response to people wondering what would happen with CWF Worldwide. PWP reached out also to possibly have some sort of discussion about this with several promotion’s management team including CWF Mid Atlantic.

It should also be noted that WWE has been under a “restricted” category for up to two years according to some. Since I don’t keep track of all WWE content I couldn’t verify that length of time, but several people mentioned that content has been hidden for roughly that period of time on different social media platforms so seemingly not connected or trying to stir a certain narrative. Beyond Wrestling said they contacted Youtube and were given a response that Youtube was looking into it.

For those wondering, here is an excerpt from a Verge article about the situation and how Google is handling it:

“We’re also raising the bar for our ads policies to further safeguard our advertisers’ brands.”…That statement followed a more direct plea to advertisers earlier this week in which Google promised it would be giving brands more direct control over and insight into where ads were placed on YouTube and Google-partnered third-party sites. The company also promised new tools like artificial intelligence-powered filtering that would detect offensive language and other contents within a video and flag it. Bloomberg reports that Google plans on implementing these new tools and changes as soon as this Sunday, according to an internal company memo. Yet it’s unclear just how effective Google’s new tools will be, and what it might take to bring advertisers back.

Let us know what you think either by mail at mailbag@pwponderings.com or the ROHworld forum or tweet at us @pwponderings

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