YouTube Deleting My Channel (My Response to Graham Stephan and Team YouTube)

Graham Stephan is a YouTube Creator with over 3 Million Subscribers whose channel could be Deleted by YouTube… and it’s not even his fault. YouTube has a major problem with spam comments and impersonation we need to talk about…

Graham’s Video About What’s Happening to Him

YouTube Deleting Your Channel is the last thing you want to hear if you’re a content creator, especially if you’re a fulltime content creator like Graham Stephan, and this is happening to other channels and may keep happening if things don’t change.

YouTube sometimes catches innocent channel’s in trying to clean up the problem of people abusing the YouTube Terms of Service. Whether you’re a Small YouTuber or a FullTime YouTuber these things could affect and impact you and your ability to grow on YouTube.

How to Get 4000 Hours of Watch Time
How to Get 1000 Subscribers


00:00 YouTube Might Delete Graham’s Channel
01:34 Fake Accounts Spamming and Scamming
03:48 How to Block Scammers Comments in Settings
04:56 It Get’s Worse — YouTube Deleting Channels
06:12 How YouTube Can Help Creators
10:19 Spam Filters Hurt Community Engagement
10:58 Hold Fake Advertisers Accountable
13:35 YouTube Needs Creators Control of Ads
14:38 Creators Protect Your Channel




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Roberto Blake is a Creative Entrepreneur, Keynote Speaker, and YouTube Certified Educator. He is the founder of Awesome Creator Academy and host of the Create Something Awesome Today Podcast.

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— Probably the worst news you could get

as a YouTube content creator

is that YouTube is gonna
delete your channel,

and that is what’s
happening to Graham Stephan,

a YouTuber with over
three million subscribers

in the financial education niche,

probably one of the best
and biggest channels

in that niche on YouTube,

and this is something
we need to talk about

because this affects more than Graham,

this is something that could happen

to any YouTube content creator,

and the worst part is
it’s not even his fault.

Graham is one of my favorite
YouTube content creators,

we’re actually both gonna
be speakers at VidSummit

and hopefully I’ll get to meet him.

But this video is not really for Graham,

it’s actually for the rest of you.

Andrei Jikh, another
financial education YouTuber

recently made a video

about what’s happening to
Graham and his channel,

and so I wanted to chime in,

it’s not the video I had
planned to put out today,

but I wanted to chime in

because this is something
that many YouTubers

have actually DMed me about recently.

It’s not an issue I was
aware had gotten this extreme

and it could potentially mean

that more YouTube channels
could be queued for deletion,

and so I wanna make this
video for you, the creators,

to know how to kinda protect your channel,

but I also have a message for team YouTube

if they happen to be watching.

And don’t worry,

this is not me like
dunking on them in any way,

it’s just some concerns

that a lot of people in the community have

and what we think can be done about it.

Sometimes you don’t just sit there

and complain about problems,

sometimes you actually have to come up

with solutions for them.

So you understand what’s going on.

There are several YouTube policies

with regard to spam and
comments that become a problem.

They become a bigger problem
when it’s not you doing them,

and when it’s bots and
scammers doing it in your name.

Many of you probably know

that there has been a
massive problem on YouTube

with fake accounts impersonating creators,

especially on their own channel

and leaving comments
that then try to get you

to give your email address
or use a WhatsApp number,

and ultimately, they try to
scam a creator’s audience.

Usually it ends up being a
crypto scheme of some kind,

and that has become a rampant
problem on YouTube lately.

Social media as a whole,
but in particular, YouTube.

In the past, we’ve
actually covered the fact

that hackers have targeted
YouTubers for crypto schemes

it even happened to a
friend of the channel,

Jon Prosser from Front Page Tech.

You may have even seen videos
from creators like Coffeezilla

covering these crypto scams

and the rampant abuse
of bots here on YouTube

that are becoming a
problem with impersonation,

even impersonating channels

that are warning you about scams,

how meta and ridiculous is that?

It’s something I’ve been going
through here on the channel

and something I wanna tell my audiences,

if you don’t see the icon with me

and my verified YouTube check mark,

that thing I have because of
having 100,000 subscribers

also a lot of OG channels
have it without having that,

and you get verified, then it’s not me,

and I’m not gonna hock you some crypto app

or anything like that,
I don’t use WhatsApp,

so this what, if you
see that in the comments

replying to what you’re
saying, it’s not me,

just so we’re clear on that.

And again, Graham, myself, everybody,

we try to go through and prune these,

we try and do hide from channel,

send that person to the shadow realm

and banish them forever.

But you know, it’s like cutting off

the heads of the hydra is
what I think Andre said,

like, you know, you cut one off,

seven more grow back, it’s a problem.

Now, if you’re a content creator,

one of the ways you can address this

is in YouTube in your channel settings,

if you go to where it says community,

you have community settings.

Here, not only can you
permanently ban people

from commenting on your channel

and you can send them to the shadow realm,

for all my nerds out
there, you know what’s up,

just send them to the shadow
realm and that’s taken care of,

but in case they keep cropping up

with the same thing over and over again,

you can actually put banned words

into your community settings

and therefore you can kind of prune

and moderate your channel
in an automated fashion.

Another thing you can choose to do

is block links from your comment section,

and this could really help as well.

I’ve had to make robust comment filters,

largely due to racism,
and usually due to creepos

whenever I collab with a
female content creator,

but lately, most of my energy

has been dedicated to putting
in the proper spam filters

to stop people from scamming my audience,

especially with these WhatsApp
and cryptocurrency schemes.

And with Graham’s channel,
this has been rampantly abused,

and they’re just so much
of a problem with it,

and it’s gone even further

to people making an ad impersonating him

and then targeting it
against his audience,

abusing not only the
comment section of YouTube

with impersonation and fraud,

but also repetitive spam comments,

which is against terms of service,

but then on top of that,
impersonating the YouTuber

and then taking people off
site for fraud and scams,

like again, trifecta of
breaking terms of service.

This is a massive problem

and it’s meant that Graham’s
channel is queued for deletion

for July 12th.

Now, I don’t believe his
channel will fully be deleted,

it is a possibility

because in the attempts that
YouTube has made in the past

to try to deal with these scams and fraud

and things of this nature,

it’s accidentally targeted
innocent YouTubers

just for talking about
cryptocurrency at all,

even exposing scams
involving cryptocurrency.

Coffeezilla who runs an anti scam channel

temporarily had his channel
deleted for a couple of hours

just for talking about
cryptocurrency, which is insane.

What I would want to happen

at least as far as team
YouTube is concerned

is this may feel like, okay,

it doesn’t help smaller channels,

but for the larger channels

that are basically
full-time content creators,

I think for anybody

that’s at the silver
play button level or more

that before anyone is targeted
or queued for deletion

before that deletion happens,

then they should absolutely
have a YouTube team member

actually reach out to them

and have direct communication with them.

I don’t think that anybody

who has built up a channel
to 100,000 subscribers

that YouTube can say is a
full-time, or legitimate,

or seasoned content creator

should have their channel
queued for deletion

without a conversation being had

either through email or something.

I think that there should
be a direct outreach

and a way for a content creator

to have a communication with YouTube

when they’re at that level, at least.

And the reason that I’m using
100,000 as the cutoff here,

’cause I know there’s people

that are gonna feel offended by that,

I just think that there
are too many channels

that would make it impossible

for YouTube to offer this to everybody,

but we know that there
are only, and I say only,

about a quarter million
silver play button channels

worldwide as of the making this video,

and that’s a huge,
ridiculous number anyway,

but that at least is
reasonable and manageable

and I could see them having
the resources to handle that.

So if you’re gonna queue
a channel for deletion,

and I think at that level,

it’s much rarer for channels
to end up queued for deletion

so you can see why this
for me is a process

and a workflow problem of, okay,

there’s a quarter million channels,

how many of them could ever
possibly be queued for deletion

if they’re at 100,000 subscribers,

it seems reasonable that
you could get a human being

on the phone at that point,
’cause it can’t be that many,

not in any given month anyway,

not without a larger
systemic massive problem

on the platform.

So I feel like that’s an appropriate step

for YouTube as a company to make.

I also believe that for
channels at that level,

what about just having a
paid customer service tier?

I understand that it’s a free platform

and that we have to
temper our expectations

because we’re getting free hosting,

we’re getting free unlimited uploads,

we get access to an audience

that have potential to monetize with ads.

YouTube does a lot, I
do think it’s generous,

and I don’t think they get
enough credit for that.

However, I think that
there are expectations

that you can have when
you’re a paying customer

versus just a contractor, or a
partner with a revenue share.

I think when you’re paying up front money,

it goes a long way toward investing

in the staffing and resources
for quality customer service,

and then it also means that
there’s a contractual obligation

when money has been exchanged.

When there’s not that contract
and that obligation in place,

again, probably need to expect
very little in that instance.

However, if we can
become paying customers,

I think it’s worth a lot of us

who are full-time content creators,

we’d be willing to do it.

I know I would just rather
be a paying customer

and know that I have expectations

since I’m putting money on the line

and I have skin in the game,

in that way, I can have
a guarantee of service.

I also think that for everybody else,

if YouTube could be
very transparent with us

about what the channel deletion process

and queue looks like,
even just a little bit,

I know they don’t want
people to game the system,

but it’s like we would love to know

just a little bit more about this process

and how the decisions are made,

and at what point they’re made,

because it just feels like
there are a lot of problems

where channels like Graham
or Coffeezilla or others

end up getting deleted for
things that are not their fault,

I think that maybe some more
help with security and things

so that people like Jon Prosser,

if they get hacked, there’s
a faster resolution to that,

I just feel like we need
a little bit more support

and a little bit more help

with things that happen on the platform

that aren’t our fault as content creators.

And I think that that’s not a
huge ask to make of YouTube.

Now when it comes

to again, managing and
pruning the comments,

I think that that’s something

that we can help out a little bit with.

YouTube I think has been
stepping up with some of that

problem is sometimes innocent comments

get caught up in all of that.

I’ve had to be very
aggressive with my filters

so there might be some of
you that are doing, you know,

funny things or memes or things

that then get caught in my filter,

there’s some people who probably think

that, oh, you know, he’s
censoring this or censoring that,

but it’s really, I have
to be so aggressive

about preventing these scams

that my comment filters

are kind of ridiculous at this point,

and there’s just really
nothing else I can do about it.

Now, with regard to the
fraudulent advertisers,

I’m a paying advertiser on YouTube myself

for my coaching business,
Awesome Creator Academy.

Sometimes you might see
an ad from me pop up

for one-on-one coaching, or
for the YouTube starter kit,

and those are legitimately me.

Now, the problem is that
Graham Stephan, and MrBeast,

and several other very prominent creators,

usually people that are either
over a million subscribers,

or tens of millions of subscribers,

or that are very relevant
in finance or cryptocurrency

have people using their likeness

and fraudulently impersonating
them and running ads

targeting their audience
or other creators channels,

and basically trying to manipulate them

into these scams and get their money.

And Google advertising
is a separate entity

and different than YouTube,

even though they’re both owned by Google,

most content creators
are not aware of that,

they don’t know how the
advertising that pays them works.

I was Google AdWords certified

before I was a YouTube content creator,

that was my job back in corporate America

and I’m still very familiar with it today,

as I manage it for myself,

I’ve managed it for other people before.

So when it comes to the advertising side,

I want Google ads and that team

to step up a lot more in the vetting.

I know that it’s almost as crazy

as the uploads captaining to
YouTube in terms of vetting,

but I do believe that there
should be filters in place,

especially when you know you
have prominent content creators

that have some extra mechanism

for verifying that association,

and so that people cannot
fraudulently impersonate us

and target our audience.

Otherwise the only recourse
we’re really left with

is the YouTube copyright system,

because just blocking
those individual links

as an AdSense publisher,

what they do, you take one
down seven more grow back.

It’s not working.

Also people reporting that
people are impersonating MrBeast

and using him for cryptocurrency schemes,

or Graham Stephan, or anybody,

that reporting system is not
getting the job done either.

So aside from us needing
to go the legal route

of copyright and trademark,

which again, if you’re a
full-time content creator,

start looking into trademarks
for things for your brand

so that when people impersonate
you and use your likeness,

you have a legal recourse
and a way to take them down

with DMCA and those types of things,

it’s a pain, and again,
don’t use it in bad faith

but it’s important at this point

with people literally going
out of their way to run scams

and defraud your audience.

And so we have to protect
our audiences at this point,

not just our own reputation,

but we have to protect people

from getting scammed and losing money.

And we’re having to intervene
and step in that way

because again, I know it’s unwieldy,

I know it’s a global platform,

and I know it gets very bogged down,

but the Google ad system

when it comes to the fact
that YouTube content creators

are a thing that exists,

I think has to take that into
consideration in some way,

and that there needs to be

more aggressive filtering and vetting

to make sure that
impersonation is not happening,

that prominent creators
are not being targeted,

and their audiences aren’t being targeted

for these type of scams,
and these types of things.

Maybe give us as creators

a little bit more transparency and control

over some of the ads and vendors

that appear on our channels,

and that would go a long way

toward us taking on some
of that responsibility

and protecting the audience.

I know that it’s hard on
Google and YouTube side

to always do these things,

but again, if you give us
the tools, we as a community

will take care of ourselves
a lot of the time.

So to the creators out there,

just remember, do everything you can

to be in compliance with
YouTube’s terms of service,

make sure you understand
those things fully,

and if you are a full-time content creator

and you don’t understand
the terms of service,

hire a lawyer to explain
the terms of service to you

if this is something you rely
on, and it’s your livelihood.

Like I said, there are other
channels besides Graham

that this has happened to,

there are people who have
DMed me about this issue

and this isn’t the only issue
we’re seeing in the community

with things like this,

and so I really just want
there to be solutions

that exist for people.

So if you’re on team YouTube
and you’re watching this,

I hope that you take some of this to heart

and know that this is not me
in any way coming at you guys,

I know you have a really difficult job,

I know there are literally just shy

of a hundred million creators

that you’re trying to take care of,

but we need more resources,
we need more help with this.

And then as for the creators,

just make sure everything you’re
doing that can protect you

and your audience, and your
reputation, your channel

is something that you’re
making a priority,

and I hope that this video
helped you in some way.

It’s not a fun video to make,

but I think it’s a
necessary video to make.

And I hope that it helps you in some way,

or at least lets you know

that there are people who
are looking at these problems

and are trying to find solutions.

As always, thank you so much for watching

and don’t forget,

go out there and create
something awesome today,

I’ll be back with a regular
video later this week.

Take care.


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