Ad requirements for YouTube

In October 2020, we improved our user safeguards, which may result in lower impressions for policy-compliant ads that contain sensitive or inappropriate content. These changes help us provide a better experience for YouTube’s users. While all ads must comply with our advertising policies, this article outlines the additional requirements your ad assets must meet in order for your campaigns to serve on YouTube.

Prohibited categories

Exaggerated or inaccurate claims

 Assets that contain exaggerated or false claims for a product or a service or to mislead users

Examples:

  • False claims related to money or overnight success (for example, ads that tell people how to get rich in a short time frame)
  • False or exaggerated claims around curing diseases

Offensive language

 Assets that use inappropriate or offensive language

Example

  • Assets containing obscene or offensive language, which may offend users
  • Derogatory language that incites hatred against, promotes discrimination of, or disparages an individual or group that is associated with systemic discrimination

Negative events and imagery

 Assets that include mentally-distressing, disturbing, repulsive, or gross content; or scary content related to injuries, death, and decay

Examples:

  • Dangerous actions that could potentially result in bodily harm or encourages imitation of the action, such as dangerous challenges
  • Dramatized or animated content that is excessively gory or realistic
  • Funerals that show people weeping, mourning, or screaming
  • Videos designed to scare you intentionally or that contain footage of distressing accidents or natural disasters (enforcement applies to simulated or real content)

Allowed with limitations Allowed with limitations

  • Content such as movies, TV shows, news channels, and video games are permitted in ads, but should avoid showing gory content

Improper content

 Assets that focus on specific body parts or health conditions

Examples:

  • Medical or dental surgery procedures that show blood, guts, gore, bodily fluids, or tooth decay
  • Emphasizing body parts (for example, zooming in on belly fat)
  • Showing bodily symptoms (for example, fluids or rashes)

 Assets with nudity, or that include racy or sexually suggestive topics

Examples:

  • Adult content promotions where the majority of the ad is focused on nudity or sexual topics
  • Ads that promote dating using sexually-explicit imagery or language

Allowed with limitations Allowed with limitations

  • Ads for weight loss, hair loss, skin conditions, and other health conditions are allowed as long as the imagery isn’t disturbing
  • Promotion of products like swimwear or spa treatments are permitted as long as the content is not overtly sexualized
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