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21 Sep, 2019 01:14

YouTube forced to apologize & reverse verification reforms after user uprising threatens bottom line

YouTube forced to apologize & reverse verification reforms after user uprising threatens bottom line

YouTube is reversing course – and apologizing profusely – after an attempt to strip popular channels of their verification checks nearly triggered an uprising. Management listening to the users - is this a social media first?

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki took to Twitter on Friday to grovel before the enraged YouTube community, apologizing for the “frustration and hurt” caused by the mass un-verification and for “missing the mark” with the rollout. “We heard loud & clear how much the badge means to you,” she tweeted, alluding to the deluge of angry comments all YouTube management accounts received on Thursday.

Channels with over 100,000 subscribers that had been stripped of their badges have had them reinstated and no longer have to appeal to keep them – though “we’ll continue reviewing those channels to ensure we’re protecting creators from impersonation.

A post on the YouTube Creator Blog explained that the platform was only trying to protect celebrities - er, creators - from impersonation, and that viewers sometimes got confused when they saw the check mark, mistaking it for endorsement from YouTube rather than verification of identity.

Also on rt.com ‘Why does YouTube do dumb things?’: Checkmark overhaul leaves creators FURIOUS

Following Thursday’s ill-advised removal of the verification check mark from a number of popular YouTubers’ channels, social media was flooded with outraged users demanding their badge be reinstated. The change had been sprung on them with no warning, and, according to the emails they had received, there was no way to become reverified.

The reversal mollified many of the top creators who’d had the rug pulled out from under them, but Wojcicki’s tweets were still engulfed with angry YouTubers skewering her for “missed the mark” on every new YouTube “feature” rollout – especially the last year’s worth of mass deplatformings – and begging her to try consulting creators before making any huge changes next time. “Quick question, when do you think you’ve ever actually hit the mark? Genuinely curious,” sneered one commenter.

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