Quality with YouTube Content

The quality of a company is defined by the customer, which means in the case of YouTube, providing a satisfactory service for users and viewers is an everyday job. In the past couple of months, the google owned company, YouTube, has been criticized for their handling of YouTube star Logan Paul. YouTube’s mission statement is to give everyone a voice and to show them the world. YouTube believes that they are making the world a better pace by providing a place where people can listen, share, and build communities through their stories. There are also four essential freedoms that YouTube wants their video streaming service to practice, Freedom of Expression, Freedom of Information, Freedom of Opportunity, and Freedom to Belong. That being said YouTube will not allow nudity or sexual content, harmful or dangerous content, hateful content, violent or graphic content, harassment and cyberbullying, threats, or child engagement. These guidelines are clearly stated on their company homepage, and users with YouTube accounts are made aware of these rules before awarded their account. With these company guidelines in mind, it is the opinion of every viewer judge YouTube on their quality, or ability to hold by these guidelines. The problem with a website that has the level of  traffic that YouTube has every day, from all over the world, is when a video post breaks these guidelines, like that of Logan Paul, it seems as if YouTube did not do their job of censoring bad content.  Logan who is ranked 11th overall with 314 million views on his videos at the age of 22 received his first strike from YouTube after his trip to Japan, and most notably Aokigahara, or more commonly known has japans suicide forest. On one of his vlogs from the trip he looked for and found a suicide victim, who he eventually posed with, and said non-sensitive comments towards the victim and the situation. After a leave of absence from his video blog, and a global public backlash at him, and his videos, Logan return with an apology and a documentary about suicide prevention. Unfortunately, about a month after his return, YouTube customers are appalled at a video posted by Logan of him tasering a rat, and a tweet in which his stated he would eat a Tide Pod for every retweet from his 4.2 million followers, an act that has sent many to the hospital. YouTube took down the video of Logan in Japan from their website and has removed all advertisements from his channels. With Logan Paul’s YouTube channel being such a huge platform, the attention it gets from YouTube customers, demands extra attention from YouTube management. Following these acts from one of YouTube’s most popular users, there may be prevention costs inflicted on YouTube for not preventing an instance where their product fails to satisfy its customers. These costs can include the opportunity cost from companies dropping their ads from YouTube, as to avoid being associated with a company that allows people like Logan Paul to post horrific content. In conclusion, the quality of YouTube is questioned in two major factors after this Logan Paul incident. First, with the restrictions to video posting on YouTubes page, they need to be more responsible and have better security in place to avoid poop content from being posted. Second, with this incident occurring on such a popular page, that was heavily used for advertisement, what levels of screening does YouTube have to ensure quality from those most popular on their website.





9 thoughts on “Quality with YouTube Content

  • February 14, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    Another potential cost for Youtube having their brand connected to negative content is the impact on Youtube TV. At a time when they are attempting to dramatically expand the service the negative publicity could drive consumers towards a competitor despite that there was no problem with the actual service. Youtube has recently acquired the ability to air several sports leagues and made a deal with Turner to show their programs. Positive headlines like those however have been overshadowed by the recent news regarding the Logan Paul controversy. This example highlights the how a firm must ensure high quality standards in all of its operations because one mistake can impact all business areas. This speaks to the interconnectivity of business operations in todays landscape and stresses the importance of quality control in all areas.


    • February 14, 2018 at 4:49 pm

      I completely agree with Thomas. It is hard to have faith in or want to continue using a product when there are no consequences for misuse. In my opinion, YouTube did not do enough to punish Logan Paul for the misuse of their platform. This lack of action not only connects YouTube to a bad reputation, but additionally it leaves them vulnerable for more accounts breaking the rules under the assumption that there will be no consequences. In order to show users that they are serious, I think that YouTube should have fined Logan Paul for blatantly violating the contract he agreed to when he made an account. Considering his popularity and revenue generated from YouTube, it wouldn’t affect him that greatly. However, this act would demonstrate to not only YouTube users but also potential future partners that they are serious about the quality of their project and are willing to take actions against any defects. As of now, when YouTube is actively trying to grow their brand and stretch beyond their website, this sort of mismanagement does not look appealing to potential partners.

  • February 14, 2018 at 5:58 pm

    This post reminds me of a debate we had in my journalism law and ethics class last semester. We focused a lot on President Donald Trump’s Twitter and a few questions surrounding it including if Trump’s use if Twitter is appropriate, if it’s legal and if it complies with Twitter’s conduct policy. The major question we addressed was if Twitter had grounds to ban Trump from Twitter, and, if it does, should it?

    Twitter has a hateful conduct policy on its website, and it says users may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease. Additionally, the statement says an account will not be allowed to exist if its primary purpose is to incite harm towards others in any of those categories.

    Some of Trump’s tweets definitely walk the line of attacking or threatening people in these categories, yet he remains an active user. In this case, I went back to do more research on the topic since this debate happened in November, and I found that Twitter addressed this issue directly. In a blog post, Twitter says that they do review content posted by world leaders, but that “Blocking a world leader from Twitter or removing their controversial Tweets would hide important information people should be able to see and debate.”

    The post also highlighted the freedom to discuss every kind of topic. This issue definitely overlaps with censorship and the First Amendment right to free speech, but in terms of managing quality Twitter had to decide if the content produced by Donald Trump’s Twitter is up to the company’s standards, and if it jeopardizes the quality or reliability of the platform as a whole. Now that they’ve released this blog post, Twitter has made it clear that it doesn’t believe Trump threatens the quality of its site.

    One Twitter user posted a string of tweets as to why Trump should be banned from the site. He equated Twitter to a bar, saying “A bar is run privately, and open to the public. Anyone can go in and get a drink… but if you have too many, start harassing the their customers the barkeep has to kick your ass out. For the safety and comfort of others.” Therefore, Trump is the belligerent customer that needs to be escorted kindly out the door. I still believe that Trump uses Twitter inappropriately given his rank, and could in the future really compromise the quality of Twitter as a platform.




  • February 14, 2018 at 6:19 pm

    One of the issues that stick out to me in YouTube’s attempts to police problems, such as Logan Paul’s content, is that of a double-edged sword. YouTube’s revenue source is mostly based off of advertisements, either sponsored videos, advertisements embedded in videos, or banner advertisements. Obviously, each type of advertisement is more valuable if more viewers will see it. For YouTube, the best way to generate consistent, high volume views is through popular posters, commonly called “YouTubers.” Logan Paul certainly fits this bill, with, as you cited, 314 million views. He has gotten to this level by posting often controversial material, although never as far as his infamous Japanese forest video. The real challenge for YouTube comes in finding the balance between ensuring the safety of their community while staying away from being seen as a censor to their most popular content creators. If they were to stifle the types of videos users could upload completely, the popularity of their website, and thus ad revenue, would certainly suffer in turn. Logan Paul’s video was certainly over the line and deserved to get taken down, but to play devil’s advocate on Laura’s point, I think it is very difficult for them to choose to dole out harsh punishments. Whether you like YouTubers like Logan Paul or not (I certainly do not understand the appeal), the fact is that people like him are huge revenue generators for the company, and strict punishments may not be sound from a financial perspective.

  • February 14, 2018 at 6:20 pm

    I think this post poses a very interesting question about managing quality in a very different way. In much of the course content quality management is the process of managing a product production or providing a high-quality service generated by the company itself. In this case YouTube’s service is not as much generated by the company as it is by those who view it. So now YouTube is tasked with managing the quality of their consumer’s videos. Their quality management is more like quality screening, as Tommy discussed. Another good point that Tommy makes is that quality is in the eyes of the consumer, so to better manage their content quality YouTube relies on their consumers giving them feedback. But isn’t this a catch 22 for YouTube? They rely on consumers to judge quality of content that consumers themselves generate. YouTube is therefore tasked with justifying what they will allow to be posted, giving themselves the final say on what is their standard of quality. YouTube’s problem lies when they allow a video to be released that does not follow the guidelines that they themselves set. It’s hard to justify that this video release was YouTube’s fault, but it is clear that YouTube may need to examine their screening process to determine how certain videos and comments were made available to the public. Perhaps simply placing heavier focus on more popular channels will help, but it is likely an entire process re-engineering of quality control may be necessary, as it is by nature a very difficult process to control quality on such a site.

  • February 14, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    It is interesting to read about a case such as this. There are many instances in the world of business where a companies ideals do not always line up with their actions. In the case of a company such as YouTube, it is interesting to see where they draw the line with content that may violate their values. This is because they are a for-profit company and at the end of the day, they prioritize making money. It would appear as if Logan had violated the values of YouTube, but they did not ban him. This is because they did not want to upset his viewers and lose potential customers who watched his videos. However, as mentioned in this article, their actions likely hurt their bottom line more than a short ban would have. Now there is a negative stigma associated with Logan and YouTube because of his actions. YouTube should have sunk some prevention costs into their company in order to monitor the YouTube channels and prevent a problem or “defect” such as this from ever happening. In this case, their lack of prevention costs hurt their customer satisfaction and cost them a large sum of money. Logan is not the only YouTuber to have done harmful actions that have led to a negative stigma being associated with YouTube’s name. It is very hard when YouTube uses other people they may not have hired in order to generate views and revenue for them. Any YouTuber is in the public eye and is subject to all of the repercussions that come with that. The other day a gunman targeted a YouTube couple in a home invasion (https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/13/17009026/youtube-vloggers-gunman-invasion). YouTube, in this case, did nothing wrong and had no control over the situation. However, in reminds potential YouTubers that any of their actions are public and they may attract unwanted attention. This could lead a sour taste in the mind of a potential future YouTuber. Potentially costing YouTube a content creator that could have made them money. However, in the end the couple was not harmed and the attacker was put in custody.

  • February 14, 2018 at 10:26 pm

    I have been following this situation since it was first reported on and what I find most absurd is that the video wasn’t first taken down by Youtube, it was taken down by Logan Paul himself after criticism came flooding in. Youtube prides itself on allowing freedom of original content and also restricting harmful substance, yet they allowed the video to first be uploaded and then even remain up for a reasonable amount of time. They have always been quick to remove poor videos but in this case they did not act with the same amount of haste. Youtube has one priority which is to get people to watch more videos so that they can show more ads. Also, the future of Youtube only remains in tact if they post exciting videos that people want to watch. With this being said, people are still able to re-upload the controversial Jake Paul video. This “common cause” has even broke into the sites “trending” page on multiple occasions. The question isn’t how Youtube is allowing the videos to be re-uploaded, but why? The answer is clear. The video is bringing in millions of streams which means more money for them. If Youtube wants to regain Top quality management they need to put the customer first before their own gains. In order to do that they need to make continuous improvements to their posting algorithms. Harsher restrictions and standards for uploads should ultimately prevent such occurrences from happening in the future.

  • February 14, 2018 at 11:06 pm

    Personally, I have started to get upset with the service Youtube has been providing because of the unnecessary amount of ads that it plays. It is impossible to watch a video without some type of advertisement taking up at least 15 seconds of your time. Youtube has diminished in quality over the last few years because it fails to accurately monitor its content.I think this is due in part from them focusing on gaining viewers instead of screening the actual content. I found an article that is opposite to the Logan Paul issue. In this case, Youtube would not allow a video to be posted because of its “sensitive nature.” Now, as you said before, one of Youtube’s main goals is to Freedom of Information. The article I found deals with a journalist who was unable to post a video for his web series dealing with real women’s experiences with sexual assault. As the article authors wrote,“ The opacity around Google’s standards and practices, as reflected in their inconsistent enforcement, creates uncertainty at the heart of one of the internet’s most popular services.” On one hand, they want to prevent hateful and insensitive videos from being posted, yet they also prevent informational videos such as “Real Woman Stories” from being posted. There has been an explosion of streaming services popping up, thanks to their low-cost business models and the increased demand. So if Youtube wants to remain the prominent video streaming service it must take actionable measures to make sure their content is quality.
    Now, I am aware that Youtube cannot accurately filter all its content because users upload as much as 400 hours of content to YouTube every minute. But, I do not think it is too much for them to act swiftly in removing the bad content that slips through the cracks. This lack of quality is costing Google tons of money. Many profitable companies have removed their adds due to the recent events that have received wide media attention, such as the British government, Walmart, PepsiCo, and AT&T.

    Article Mentioned- https://www.wired.com/2017/03/youtubes-ad-problems-finally-blow-googles-face/

  • February 14, 2018 at 11:25 pm

    Managing the quality for an organization like YouTube is more subjective than that of a typical manufacturer or service company. Quality is measured based on a yes/no basis. Either the video is permissible in which YouTube enables the content or it fails on accounts of YouTube ‘responsible content’ policy. Customer feedback is an essential feature in YouTube quality management that comes with minimal external failure costs (unless the inappropriate content is viewed by a large audience). Users have the ability to flag content as inappropriate on the fact that the content breaches the policy terms or it violates privacy or other legal rights. YouTube said Tuesday that human reviewers would watch every second of video in its curated lineup of top content, dubbed Google Preferred, which brands pay a premium to advertise on (https://www.wsj.com/articles/youtube-subjecting-all-preferred-content-to-human-review-1516143751). This is a response to the Logan Paul incident. YouTube most popular channels, as determined by their likes, comments and shares, among other factors, are allowed to run ads before other videos are streamed by a viewer. YouTube has said since 2015 that users upload 400 hours of video to the site a minute, or 65 years of footage a day, meaning reviewing even a small slice of that total would likely require at least tens of thousands of hours. This makes video review and quality management more difficult. YouTube is tightening the boundaries of its ad space platform because of obscene and inappropriate content being posted by its top channels. YouTube is also raising the bar for channels that want to carry ads. Channels must now have accumulated at least 4,000 hours of watch time in the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers, compared with the threshold of 10,000 cumulative views that YouTube set last year. This has been a source of revenue for many YouTube channels, but the channels below the new threshold all make less than $100 a year in revenue. Since thousands of hours of content get posted to YouTube everyday it is impossible for a human to review all content before it is published on YouTube. Customer feedback is crucial to governing the YouTube platform, but YouTube can plan strategic ways to statistically minimize the number of illegitimate posts like acceptance sampling of new content everyday. YouTube has plenty of variation in its content which is posted by users that YouTube does not know and therefore cannot predict when inappropriate content will arise.

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