January 6

Over the past year, YouTube has had to make some major changes to how privacy is handled surrounding children, which has had major implications for users of the platform. Starting today, the COPPA-based changes start to take effect on YouTube (via Bloomberg).

To quickly review what’s been going on, Google settled with federal regulators last year for violating COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy and Protection Act). COPPA puts a number of requirements on websites, including YouTube, which host content made for children under the age of 13.

Over the years, COPPA hasn’t affected YouTube, since users are required to be over the age of 13 in order to have a Google account. But that’s changed recently as YouTube Kids and more youth-oriented content became a clear point of focus for the platform. Starting last year, YouTube creators were required to mark their videos as “made for kids.”

Going into 2020, these changes to YouTube will start leaving liability for videos marked for children on the creator, potentially leaving them open to fines from the government. The larger effect of this change, though, is that it could potentially have a major impact on revenue. Videos marked as for children will immediately lose access to targeted ads that have significantly higher rates.

The impact of this change is still unknown, but we’ll find out starting this week.

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