An Almost( Not Really) Comprehensive Ramble On FTC, COPPA And Future Of My Art Channel


Hi guys,I hope you all are doing fine. I am sorry that I could not upload videos
for such a long time. I got busy with some personal problems. I also had a horrible accident recently and
was hospitalized. After that I was bed ridden for over a month at home under the nurse’s care. Now I am much better and recovering well. While I was bed ridden I got really bored
and started painting this cute illustration on my android device with my only hand that
was working at that time. I was using an app that records painting process
automatically. So I was planning to upload the painting time
lapse and talk a bit about my situation, the illustration and the app when I get a bit
better. But that was before I came to know about COPPA
and FTC issues. If you don’t know what happened, I would
strongly suggest you to check the videos I mentioned in the description. It will affect both creators and viewers as
your favourite creators may disappear from the platform because of this. In any case, here is the summary, in September
2019, FTC or Federal Trade Commission and YouTube had a settlement, according to
which YouTube had to pay 170 million dollars to FTC for violating COPPA or children’s online
privacy protection act, under which a website can not collect data from children under the
age of 13 years. But YouTube is not for kids aged 13 and below
as one has to be of the age 13 or above to have a YouTube account. There’s literally a YouTube app for children
called YouTube kids. And because of this YouTube could circumvent
all the allegation for so long. But unfortunately kids do visit YouTube main
site, either by lying about their age or from a parents account or just by not logging in
…they do visit the site. And YouTube knows about this because, YouTube
bragged about having huge traffic from kids on its site to the advertisers. And then FTC stepped in. Well I heard about pressure groups that hastened
FTC action against YouTube….but I am not sure. Now, according to the settlement, FTC will
sweep YouTube in January 2020 to check for kids content and can sue individual creators
for not complying with COPPA. Not only FTC can sue 42 thousand dollars per
video but also can ask YouTube to terminate their channels. On the other hand YouTube rolled out new changes to label videos either for kids or not for kids. All creators must label their videos under
either of those two categories. That’s it …there’s no labeling that can
identify family friendly videos that is not in either extremes. What is worse is the guideline produced by
both the FTC and YouTube to consider what should be for kids and what should not. Here I am going to talk about mostly things
that can be applied to my channel but there are more such weird and vague guidelines. First of all, when it comes to evaluating
videos on YouTube,that is, if it is complying with COPPA or not FTC added the term “appealing
to children” along with “targeted to children” as a criteria. That means if FTC thinks a video is interesting
to kids, even if its targeted audience is adult population, FTC will consider the video
is for kids even though analytics show that all the viewers are adults. “appealing to children” is a broad and
subjective term as anything can attract kids. For that however FTC gave us creators few
pointers. Animation or cartoon characters in the video
will be considered as appealing to kids therefore the video is for children. Obviously,because we all know adults don’t
watch animation or got nothing to do with cartoons and comics. Bright colours in the video and/or on the
thumbnail can be considered appealing to children, because adults like grays and black and white
or extremely gloomy colors. you know… So FTC or YouTube may consider this illustration
as appealing to children and mark my video as “for kids” or worse, fine for not labeling
it properly. In addition to other points, Words like FUN
or COOL or WHATEVER etc used in the video may be considered as language directed to
kids …because adults don’t like cool stuff and FUN is not allowed in adult life. There are more such genius guidelines for
creators to follow. FTC did update their statement recently,I
will link it below. According to the new statement in their blog “just because your video has bright colors
or animated characters doesn’t mean you’re automatically covered by COPPA. While many animated shows are directed to
kids, the FTC recognizes there can be animated programming that appeals to everyone.”..So
this is for animation mainly. The problem still remains that it is highly
subjective. Weird thing is that there is an exemption
for family friendly or mixed audience content under COPPA but neither FTC nor YouTube mentioned
this exemption or created a system that can accommodate such exemption. As for my channel, 100% of my viewers are
above 18 years of age according to YouTube analytics but I am not going to take any chance. My channel is filled with bright coloured
artwork and tutorials. I already deleted 20-25 videos, made few of
my favourite videos private as I could not bring myself to delete them. The reason I do not want to mark my videos
as “for kids” just to save my channel is because if I mark a video for kids, I will
lose comment section of that video, viewers will not be able to add it to play list, it
will not be searchable, channels that are marked as for kids will lose notification
option, end card, info card, community tab, stories and membership option. I will have no way to communicate with my
viewers and my videos will essentially be invisible to the subscribers as well as new
viewers. So basically the channel will die one way
or another. This channel is a passion for me and is
something very close to my heart. I love making art videos on it and talk to
my viewers. So anyways, I am going to back up my videos
on other video sharing sites like D tube or Peer tube or any other and will make an update
video on YouTube to inform everyone, that is if my channel exist till then. As for future videos, if my channel survives
after January 2020, I will change the subject matter and make them geared more towards adults. I will have videos with paintings but talk
about topics that will not be interesting for kids. I will also change my painting style here
to attract older viewers. From now on I will upload all my colourful
paintings and illustrations to my patreon account along with all my future tutorials. If you really like my art and learned something
from my tutorials, please support me on patreon. You will get all my speed painting, animation, story telling, tutorial videos under “1 dollar a month tire”. Please consider saving this small channel
at a cost less than a cup of coffee. I hope I will see you all soon and hopefully
I can make videos on this channel next year as well. Thanks for listening to my ramble. see you soon.

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