Say What? Why?
As part of YouTube’s sweeping changes and newest, most recent hyper-fastidious rules, my channel will no longer be eligible for monetization because "it doesn’t meet the new threshold of 4,000 hours of watchtime within the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers". And there are other limitations being imposed as well that will benefit neither you guys nor I.
My channel is a very small hobbyist channel, primarily focusing on tutorials and showcase videos for SGB. Smile Game Builder is a constantly evolving engine, but its overall user base is still comparatively small. And that essentially makes it a niche game engine.
As a result, my channel doesn’t make a lot of money in the first place, but every little helps, even if paychecks are sporadic (usually every 5-6 months). This would normally contribute towards web hosting and other investments (such as video editing software) to ensure that I can produce regular, quality tutorials, as well as additional software to create assets and models. With this new imposition, it would mean that ALL of my videos – both those currently uploaded and future ones – will be automatically rendered ineligible for monetization.
This isn’t really about the money, it’s about principle. It’s very deflating when you work so hard to build something from the beginning to a point where you feel comfortable with it, at a slow but steady pace to fit in with your lifestyle, only to have it ripped away from you where you essentially have to start all over again.
What’s Next?It may be a case of continuing to upload the tutorials on YouTube as consistently as I have been until the "requirements" are met, thereby, maintaining consistency and presence.
However, based on the analytics trends, that may not happen for some time because I’ll still fall short on persistent subscribers and expected watch time. Thus, within the 30 days before my entire channel is no longer eligible for any kind of monetization, it likely will not reach these targets. It may be doable with an inordinate amount of hard work, but it’s simply not practicable. And it becomes extremely disheartening.
And this means re-evaluating the entire business model around which part of the rebranding is based, including advertisements and sponsorships (present and future). So this raises questions on whether it’s worth it and whether or not it would benefit both RPG Maker Times and you, my supporters and followers.
As many of you may already know, I’ve been thinking about RPG Maker Times’s re-branding and re-marketing strategy for a while now. And part of that has been Tryggr the Troll, its official mascot. As an example of the lunacy of their demonetization bot, most of the videos he’s appeared in seems to have resulted in almost instant demonetization, yet others where he isn’t as prevalent, or where he isn’t present at all, have remained intact. It begs the question as to whether a bare-chested fantasy troll in a loincloth is really so "suggestive", or whether I should completely eradicate him as a mascot and create something more "genteel" just to appease the "sensitivities" of this bot. I was willing to do this to ensure compliance with YouTube’s new terms; there’s no point now.
Therefore, Tryggr is – and will remain – the face of RPG Maker Times as it transitions into its new form for 2018.
What’s The Future?
The future isn’t as grim as it may first sound. I will be posting regular tutorials and more regular content elsewhere (not primarily on YouTube), which will become the official Smile Game Builder Tutorials & Showcases channel.
And while, since YouTube is still the "devil everyone knows", the usual weekly tutorials will continue. The numbers of the tutorials on YouTube may not match either.
To end this otherwise depressing topic, I’d like to thank everyone who has supported and encouraged me so far, all of my followers and current sponsors.
Without you, this wouldn’t have become as much of a passion as it has. I enjoy creating tutorials and showcasing others’ works. It’s often said, "Do what you love and love what you do." I will certainly continue doing what I love doing for awhile at least. But I will do it elsewhere!