YouTube witnesses a huge jump in views and clickbait videos amid coronavirus pandemic

As the number of people affected by the coronavirus pandemic increase worldwide, so does chaos regarding the virus increase. According to the Chief Product officer at YouTube, Neal Mohan, the popular social media platform saw a 75% increase in the news category. In comparison to news viewership the same time around last year, there has been a significant rise this year. Millions of people are tuning in the video hosting platform to stay updated regarding the coronavirus news, hoping to hear something positive and informative.

Although the popular Google-owned platform has regular heavy user traffic, with over two billion viewers a month, the user traffic has doubled since the widespread of the coronavirus pandemic. YouTube has teamed up with several health agencies to create informational panels and generating content that will help educate people regarding the virus. Ever since then, the topic of the virus has been searched on the YouTube homepage around 10 billion times alone. People all around the world are turning to YouTube to watch informational videos and content generated by experienced medical experts to educate themselves on the virus, to be able to effectively fight it and stay safe. This initiative taken by YouTube has been praised by several social media and influential moguls, increasing likes for the platform even more.

Moreover, with valid informational content being shared on YouTube, so are the false clickbait videos. YouTube has witnessed a significant rise in misleading content being generated. Last week, there was a huge conflict regarding the conspiracy theories of the coronavirus being linked to 5G technology developed by China. Many YouTube videos made on this topic went viral globally, resulting in a few 5G towers being burned by people in the UK. Following this confusion, YouTube deleted damaging conspiracy theories regarding the coronavirus and issued strict policies against fraudulent content being generated regarding the pandemic for clickbait purposes. Another category of videos that were taken strict action against and completely banned off of the platform was connected to the popular hashtag #filmyourhospital, a social media misinformation campaign designed to prove the virus being a hoax. The viral hashtag has caused many patients’ discomfort and continues to spread misinformation that can be damaging to the health of people worldwide. The platform has even removed some medical advice videos giving out false information on the coronavirus cures, which are not proved by the medical health care authorities. These videos were dubbed to not be in line with YouTube’s new policies relating to the virus, to ensure that people are not manipulated into believing fake information. This step will keep everyone safe all over the world from being ill-advised regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

Although the rising YouTube has seen an increase in views and user engagement since the widespread of the coronavirus, the platform has also seen a huge drop in the advertisement spendings, lowering its overall budget, which is also reflecting on its creators revenue. Many marketing clients are backing out of the advertisement contracts due to slow business worldwide.

Read next: YouTube continues its clampdown on controversial content
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