YouTube doesn’t allow content that endangers the emotional and physical well-being of minors. A minor is someone under 18 years old.
If you find content that violates this policy, report it. If you believe that a child is in danger, you should get in touch with your local law enforcement to report the situation immediately.
What this policy means for you
If you're posting content
Don’t post content on YouTube if it fits any of the descriptions below.
- Sexualization of minors: Sexually explicit content featuring minors and content that sexually exploits minors including minor nudity posted with comedic intent. We report content containing child sexual abuse imagery to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, who work with global law enforcement agencies.
- Harmful or dangerous acts involving minors: Content showing a minor participating in dangerous activities or encouraging minors to do dangerous activities, particularly if someone watching could imitate the dangerous act or if the content encourages or praises the dangerous act. Never put minors in harmful situations that may lead to injury, including dangerous stunts, challenges, dares, or pranks. Dangerous acts include, but are not limited to, any act in the categories listed under Extremely Dangerous challenges, such as asphyxiation or electrocution.
- Examples include content that shows minors:
- Drinking alcohol
- Using vaporizers, e-cigarettes, tobacco, or marijuana
- Misusing fireworks
- Using firearms unsupervised
- Examples include content that shows minors:
- Inflicting or advocating for the infliction of physical, sexual or emotional maltreatment or neglect of a child, including inflicting emotional distress on minors.
- Content that contains infliction of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse of a child within an educational, documentary, scientific, or artistic context and with blurring may receive an exception.
- Content that could cause minor participants or viewers emotional distress, including:
- Exposing minors to mature themes
- Simulating parental abuse
- Coercing minors
- Misleading family content: Content that targets young minors and families, but contains:
- Sexual themes
- Obscenity or other mature themes not suitable for young audiences
- Medical procedures
- Self harm
- Use of adult horror characters
- Other inappropriate themes intended to shock young audiences
- Content that targets young minors and families with age-inappropriate themes within an educational, documentary, scientific, or artistic context may receive an exception. This is not a pass to target young minors and families with mature themes intended to shock young audiences.
- Family friendly cartoons that target young minors and contain adult or age-inappropriate themes such as violence, sex, death, drugs, and more. We don’t allow content labeled as suitable for kids in the video's title, description, tags, or in the audience selection if it contains age-inappropriate themes.
- Make sure your titles, descriptions, and tags match the audience you're targeting. In addition, ensure your audience selection accurately represents the audience your content is suitable for. You can also age restrict your content upon upload if it’s intended for mature audiences.
- Cyberbullying and harassment involving minors: Content that:
- Intends to shame, deceive or insult a minor
- Reveals personal information like email addresses or bank account numbers
- Contains sexualization
- Encourages others to bully or harass
This policy applies to videos, video descriptions, comments, Stories, Community posts, live streams, playlists, and any other YouTube product or feature. Keep in mind that this isn't a complete list.
Please note these policies also apply to external links in your content. This can include clickable URLs, verbally directing users to other sites in video, as well as other forms.
We may add an age restriction to content that includes any of the following.
- Harmful or dangerous acts that adults or minors could imitate: Content containing adults participating in dangerous activities that adults or minors could easily imitate.
- Note: Simply saying, “Don’t try this at home” may not result in an exception. Learn more about age restricted Harmful or Dangerous content.
- Adult themes in family content: Content meant for adult audiences but could easily be confused with family content. This includes cartoons that contain adult themes such as violence, sex, or death. Remember you can age restrict your content upon upload if it’s intended for mature audiences.
- Vulgar language: Some language is not appropriate for younger audiences. Content using sexually explicit language or excessive profanity may lead to age restriction.
- Live chat
- Live streaming
- Video recommendations (how and when your video is recommended)
- Community posts
- Shorts Video remixing
How to protect minors in your content
Before posting content of yourself, your family, or friends, think carefully about whether it may put anyone at risk of negative attention. Minors are a vulnerable population, and YouTube has policies to protect them from unwanted attention.
- Make sure the minor is supervised by an adult and is performing age-appropriate activities such as demonstrating hobbies, educational content or public performances.
- Make sure the attire worn is age-appropriate. Avoid attire that overexposes the minor or is form-fitting.
- Use YouTube's privacy settings to limit who can see the videos you post.
Don’t post content on YouTube that features minors and meets one or more of the following:
- Filmed in private spaces at home such as bedrooms or bathrooms.
- Features minors soliciting contact from strangers, dares or challenges online, or discussing adult topics.
- Shows activities that could draw undesired attention to the minor, such as performing body contortions or ASMR.
- Reveals personal details about a minor.
These are just some examples, you can get more best practices for child safety here. If you are under 18 or the applicable age of majority in your country, Be internet awesome can help you be safe online.
Here are some examples of content not allowed on YouTube.
- A video featuring minors involved in provocative, sexual, or sexually suggestive activities, challenges and dares, such as kissing or groping.
- Showing minors involved in dangerous activities. For example, physical stunts, using weapons or explosives, or using a controlled substance like alcohol or nicotine including use of vapes or e-cigarettes.
- A video with tags like "for children", or whose audience is set to “Yes, it’s made for kids”, featuring family friendly cartoons engaging in inappropriate acts like injecting needles.
Remember these are just some examples, and don't post content if you think it might violate this policy.
- Offering money, praise, likes, or any other incentive to a minor to participate in physical contact with someone else.
- A video that advertises sexual content featuring minors or abusive content featuring minors.
- Predatory behavior involving communications with or about minors.
- Aggregating innocent content of minors for the purposes of sexual gratification.
- Fight or bullying videos featuring kids without educational, documentary, scientific or artistic context and blurring.
- Challenges, pranks, or stunts that pose the risk of physical injury or serious emotional distress. You can learn more about what’s not allowed in our policies around challenges and pranks.
- Encouraging minors to participate in dangerous activities, even if there are no minors in the content.
- Content simulating parental abuse or abandonment, simulating exposure to death or violence, or causing minors intense shame or humiliation.
- Using cartoons, puppets, or family entertainment characters to appeal to children where content features adult themes like violence and sex.
What happens if content violates this policy
If your content violates this policy, we will remove the content and send you an email to let you know. If we can’t verify that a link you post is safe, we may remove the link. Note that violative URLs posted within the video itself or in the video’s metadata may result in the video being removed.
If this is your first time violating our Community Guidelines, you'll likely get a warning with no penalty to your channel. You will have the chance to take a policy training to allow the warning to expire after 90 days. However, if the same policy is violated within that 90 day window, the warning will not expire and your channel will be given a strike. If you violate a different policy after completing the training, you will get another warning.
If you get 3 strikes within 90 days, your channel will be terminated. Learn more about our strikes system.
We may terminate your channel or account for repeated violations of the Community Guidelines or Terms of Service. We may also terminate your channel or account after a single case of severe abuse, or when the channel is dedicated to a policy violation. We may prevent repeat offenders from taking policy trainings in the future. Learn more about channel or account terminations.
We have zero tolerance for predatory behavior on YouTube. If we think a child is in danger based on reported content, we’ll help law enforcement investigate the content.