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Upcoming and recent ad guideline updates

This page provides an overview of the upcoming and recent ad guideline updates for our advertiser-friendly content guidelines. Learn more about other updates to YouTube policies here.

Latest updates

Updates from the past 3 months

 

August 2022

We've updated monetization guidance around content that may be harmful or dangerous. Uploads showcasing vigilantism may not run ads. 

The Advertiser-friendly content guidelines page has been updated to reflect this. There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.


March 2022

Updates relating to the Ukraine war (March 2022)

We’ve posted guidance on the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines page with respect to the ongoing war in Ukraine: 

Due to the war in Ukraine, content that exploits, dismisses, or condones the war is ineligible for monetization until further notice. This update is meant to clarify, and in some cases expand, our guidance as it relates to this war.

Previous updates

Updates older than 3 months

2022

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for inappropriate content for kids and families (April 2022)

We recently updated ad guidelines for “made for kids” content to help guide creators on what is suitable and not suitable for ads. We’ve created a new guideline called “Inappropriate content for kids and families” that has three categories: Content that encourages negative behavior, Mature content aimed towards kids, and Shocking content aimed towards kids. 

2021

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for adult content (December 2021)

We've updated monetization guidance around content featuring gender identity devices. Uploads showcasing objects that resemble genitalia, like breasts or penises, without showing nudity that assist creators as they explain their gender dysphoria journeys may run ads.

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for harmful or dangerous acts (October 2021)

We’ve updated our guidelines to include clearer examples in the following policy areas: Adult content, Violence, Shocking content, Hateful & derogatory content, Sensitive events, Firearms-related content, and Recreational drugs and drug-related content. We’ve also added a new Definitions section to clarify key terms used throughout the guidelines.

Additionally, we’re introducing a new guideline: Enabling dishonest behavior. This provides guidance around ad serving eligibility for content relating to trespassing, cheating, or computer hacking that is personal or paid for.

We're also moving our guidance around monetization of COVID-19 related content from a previously separate page directly into the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for ease of review. Visits to the former page will redirect to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines.

The Gaming and monetization article has also been updated in parallel to reflect these policy updates.

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for harmful or dangerous acts (October 2021)

We're updating monetization guidance around climate change misinformation in November, making it clearer that content promoting claims about climate change which run contrary to scientific consensus may not run ads. Educational, documentary or news content about this may continue to run ads.

Visit the Google Ads Help Center here for more info on this update.

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for Firearms-related content (September 2021)

We're clarifying our existing monetization guidelines around Firearms-related content. Disassembly and reassembly of weapons for maintenance may run ads. We're also strengthening our guidelines for other types of firearm content.

The Advertiser-friendly content guidelines page will be updated to reflect this in October, under Firearms-related content.

Updates to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines for Violence (July 2021)

We're updating monetization guidance around violence, making it clearer that footage of animals in distress induced by human intervention may not run ads.

Updates for multiple policies in the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines and Gaming and monetization articles (April 2021)

Based on creator and advertiser input, we’ve updated our guidelines to allow more content to become eligible for full monetization (green icon) while continuing to maintain advertiser industry standards. 
 
First, we're expanding monetization on educational, documentary or news content that may include violent interactions with law enforcement, recreational drugs and drug-related content, or sensitive events. We’re also expanding monetization for controversial issues where non-graphic, objective discussions of controversial issues are in the video. 
 
Second, we're also expanding monetization to allow for adult themes delivered through the context of humor (e.g. romance, dating jokes) and the usage of moderate profanity (e.g. shit and bitch) in the first 30 seconds.

Additionally, we’ve included more examples to the following sections to clarify their guidance: Adult content, Harmful or dangerous acts, and Firearms-related sections in the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines.
 
The Tips for monetizing gaming videos section of the Gaming and monetization article has also been updated in parallel to reflect these policy updates.

Guidance additions for the Inappropriate language, Violence, Recreational drugs and drug-related content guidelines, as well as an update to our monetization policy relating to COVID-19 (February 2021)

The Advertiser-friendly content guidelines article now includes additional examples within the “You can turn on ads for this content” sections for the Inappropriate language, Violence, and Recreational drugs and drug-related content guidelines.

Additionally, updates have been made to the Monetization update on COVID-19 content article as well as the Harmful or dangerous acts section of our advertiser-friendly content guidelines to provide more guidance around vaccination content.

Creation of a new page contextualizing advertiser-friendly content guidelines for gaming content (January 2021)

To help YouTube creators of gaming content better understand the advertiser-friendly content guidelines, we've published a new page to help bring the topic of gaming and monetization into context. 

This new page was created with the intent to make our guidelines clearer when it comes to gaming content specifically, and to help improve self-certification understanding for YouTube creators of gaming content. 

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness. 

Updates to various sections of Advertiser-friendly content guidelines providing more information and examples, Rate your content with Self-Certification article now deprecated (January 2021)

The Advertiser-friendly content guidelines article has now been updated with additional guidance and examples for self-certification. In line with this, the Rate your content with Self-Certification article has now been deprecated. 

New, comprehensive examples under “You can turn on ads but only brands who opt in will run ads” (Limited Ads) and “You should turn off ads for this content” (No Ads) for the Adult content and Hateful & derogatory content policies further clarify what content is in scope. We also separated the Sensitive events and Controversial issues policies to ensure we are providing granular and transparent policy guidance. 

Minor additions to the Harmful or dangerous acts policies have been made to demonstrate additional examples of content which could result in Limited or No Ads. 

A new note has been added to the Incendiary and demeaning, Tobacco-related content, and Adult themes in family content policies to inform readers that these are bundled under other policies in the self-certification questionnaire in YouTube Studio.

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

2020

Updates to various sections of Rate your content with Self-Certification providing more information and examples (October 2020)

The Rate your content with Self-Certification article now includes more comprehensive examples under “You can turn on ads for this content” for the Violence and Adult Content policies to further clarify what content is in scope. We also clarified the definition of “sensitive events” and “focus” in the Controversial issues & Sensitive events section.

Minor additions to the Harmful or Dangerous Acts and Inappropriate Languages sections have been made to demonstrate further examples of emotional distress pranks and to clarify that frequent usage of strong profanity could result in Limited or No Ads. 

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

Addition of News-specific guidance to Advertiser-friendly content guidelines (August 2020)

The Violence and Controversial issues and sensitive events guidelines will be clarified to include how our policies impact news reporting on current affairs. 

This update will be made live in August.

Addition of Shocking Content to Advertiser-friendly content guidelines (August 2020)

The Shocking Content guideline represents a clarification of existing policy and focuses on content that may upset, disgust, or shock viewers. We are making this change to the resources to help enhance Creator understanding of content which cannot run ads.

A new section will be added to the self-certification questionnaire. Updates will also be added to the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines and to the Rate your content with Self-Certification in August to give as much detail as possible to the Creator Community. 

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

Updates to Inappropriate language (June 2020)

The wording in this section has been amended to clarify that misspelled profanity within a title or thumbnail intended to censor inappropriate language results in Limited or No Ads. Creators can review the updated language here.  

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

Updates to Rate your Content with Self-Certification (May 2020)

The article now includes examples of content types that fall into each of the options outlined in the questionnaire found in your account. We’ve also included definitions of key concepts, such as nudity, that are referenced throughout the questionnaire.

There are no policy changes, which means you will not notice any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

Updates related to COVID-19 (April 2020)

Content that references and/or features COVID-19 and follows our Advertiser-friendly and Community Guidelines may now monetize (and will see the green icon). Find more detailed guidance on monetizing COVID-19 content here.

Updates to Controversial issues and sensitive events, and Inappropriate language (February 2020)

The article now includes a more comprehensive list of issues considered controversial, and an explanation on how we define sensitive events. We’ve also clarified our guidelines around Inappropriate Language.

There are no policy changes, which means you shouldn’t expect any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

2019

Update to Advertiser-friendly content guidelines (June 2019)

The article now includes more examples of content that will get limited or no ads. 

There are no policy changes, which means you shouldn't expect any difference in how your videos are checked for advertiser friendliness.

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