12 November 2019
FairTube has launched the first in a series of planned community actions to bring attention to the lack of transparency and accountability on YouTube. On November 11, we posted videos in English and German calling on Youtubers and supporters to send letters by mail to YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, California.
The action is a response to YouTube's refusal to allow Youtubers Union founder Jörg Sprave — or any YouTuber — to participate in a meeting planned between FairTube and YouTube/Google management at the Google office in Berlin. The meeting had planned for October 22, but a vote among Youtubers Union members showed that the membership was in favor in canceling the meeting if no Youtubers were allowed to attend. As a result, FairTube canceled the meeting.
FairTube has provided a template letter for Youtubers and supporters to use in drafting their letters to YouTube. The template letter calls for YouTube management to enter into substantive discussions with FairTube, including the Youtubers Union, and to discuss the FairTube proposals, namely:
- Publish all categories and decision criteria that affect monetization and views of videos
- Give clear explanations for individual decisions — for example, if a video is demonetized, which parts of the video violated which criteria in the Advertiser-Friendly Content Guidelines?
- Give YouTubers a human contact person who is qualified and authorized to explain decisions that have negative consequences for YouTubers (and fix them if they are mistaken)
- Let YouTubers contest decisions that have negative consequences
- Create an independent mediation board for resolving disputes
- Formal participation of YouTubers in important decisions, for example through a YouTuber Advisory Board