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YouTube Policy Enforcement Changes

By The YouTube Team

We are very excited to announce some big changes to our policy enforcement systems. Having clear rules and fair consequences are genuinely important to us and these improvements have been a long time coming.


It didn't seem fair that a user who uploads three videos that violate the Community Guidelines over the span of a year was being treated the same as someone who uploads those same videos over the course of a week. To change this, we've made it so that violations are now rescinded after six months. Accounts that had one or two warnings (as of April 16, 2008) for Community Guidelines (or Terms of Use) violations have been given a clean slate and are going forward under the new system, too!

Note that this does not apply to copyright claims, which don't expire and are not being cleared.


It used to be that if a video was removed for violating the Community Guidelines or due to a claim of copyright infringement, the user would be sent a notice via email. But these notices sometimes get caught by spam filters or go unread. The new system also displays the notice on YouTube the next time they access the site.


We are experimenting with ways of correcting some types of abusive behavior that aren't as harsh or as permanent as suspending users. What we've come up with is to temporarily mute users, so that they can still use the site and watch videos, but they can't post new content. Right now it is set up to affect users who have two Community Guidelines warnings in a six-month period and will last two weeks. Let us know what you think, if it works well we may expand it to help address other kinds of abuse as well.

These are just a few of the first visible changes made to the way these things work. There is a lot of work being done behind the scenes to continue to improve upon them. We look forward to your feedback and further enhancing the safety and experience of the YouTube community.

For more information, please see our new Help Center article on General Policy Enforcement Information.