YouTube Shorts, YouTube’s TikTok competitor, will pay creators up to $10,000 per month for making popular videos. The company intends to pay a total of $100 million over the next year, with the first installments due this month.
The fund has the potential to pay out a lot of money to creators, but payouts aren’t guaranteed. The level of popularity required to earn money will be determined by the number of people who create and watch Shorts each month, as well as the location of each creator’s audience.
These must also be original videos, according to YouTube. Reuploads and videos with watermarks from other platforms, such as TikTok, Snapchat, or Reels, will disqualify a channel from receiving payments. For the time being, the payments are only available in ten regions, including the United States, the United Kingdom, India, and Brazil, among others, with YouTube stating that the list will be expanded “in the future.”
On YouTube, creators have traditionally been compensated based on the advertisements that appear in front of their videos, with a direct correlation between the number of ad views and the amount of money received. YouTube, on the other hand, doesn’t want to put an ad in front of every quick clip, so it’s developing this alternate method of payment to compensate creators.
On today’s episode of Decoder, YouTube’s chief product officer, Neal Mohan, said that the Shorts Fund would eventually be replaced by a “long-term, scalable monetization program.” The fund is “a way to get started and actually really start figuring out” how monetization for creators of these videos should work. “You’re essentially consuming a feed of shorts,” Mohan explained, “so the model has to work differently.”
This type of payment system is becoming more widespread. TikTok and Snapchat both pay creators based on video popularity rather than ad revenue. The result could be lucrative for creators, though there is less transparency about how much they might earn each month.
The fund provides a vehicle for YouTube to jumpstart its late-in-the-game push at a short-form video service. Though TikTok has a significant head start, YouTube is, after all, YouTube — a massive and massively popular video site — which could offer it an advantage when it attempts to launch Shorts.
YouTube producers will not be required to use Shorts in order to increase their overall interaction on the platform, according to Mohan. On Decoder, Mohan stated, “Our goal there is to give every creator a voice.” “If the creator wants to achieve it by making a two-hour documentary about a topic they care about, YouTube should be the venue to do it. They should be able to do that through a 15-second Short that incorporates their favorite hit from their favorite music artists.”