YouTube introduces “Junk Video Classifier” to clean up its homepage!
Is YouTube finally cleaning up its act?
According to Bloomberg News, Google has deployed an artificial intelligence system on YouTube. It can analyze a large number of video clips without human assistance, interpret uncomfortable video clips. And then it can block these from the website home page with ease.
According to the people familiar with the matter, the internal name of the system is called “junk video classifier”, which has not been revealed before till now. It plays a key role in attracting and retaining viewers on the YouTube homepage, laying the groundwork for a new set of ads to enter the video service site.
According to a former YouTube employee, Google began testing the classifier in 2015. After a few children’s indecent videos appeared on the website in 2017. Google deployed the system extensively. That year, Google also faced resistance from a number of advertisers who feared that inappropriate videos could affect the sale of their products or services. This led to the situation massively called “Adpocalypse” now!
A Google spokeswoman confirmed that the company does have a classifier that filters videos on the YouTube homepage and on the “Watch the next video” page. The system analyzes video reports from user feedback, such as videos that are misleading and so on. The system also collects other data, such as viewer retention, likes and dislikes.
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YouTube Junk Video Classifier: More details.
This shows that YouTube actually has the ability to control the spread of inappropriate video content. However, both current and former employees have stated that the company will only take this issue seriously when the funds are at risk or when external pressure forces the company to take action.
The appearance of the junk video classifier is actually motivated by funds. As more people use their smartphones to surf the Internet, people are increasingly accessing YouTube apps and websites, rather than watching YouTube clip videos online elsewhere.
This may be good news for YouTube. According to a person familiar with the matter, Google can earn more when users watch ads directly on YouTube. YouTube has also added new homepage features, including the Trends tab and personalized video impressions to help users watch trends.
However, the problem is that some of the popular videos that appear on the homepage are explicit content. A former engineer recalls that a discussion at an internal meeting involved a video containing pictures of static male reproductive organs. Although the amount of such content is high, it also makes some users avoid the homepage and cause undesirable public influence. YouTube’s service regulations explicitly prohibit pornography.
This prompted YouTube to deploy a spam categorizer that effectively cleaned up inappropriate videos on the homepage and allowed viewers to return to a safer YouTube experience. Google recently announced to marketers that the “watch time” on the YouTube homepage and apps has increased tenfold in the past three years.
Official statements on such incidences
“We started testing the phishing classifier in 2015, and we deployed it extensively in 2016 to improve the user experience,”
said a Google spokeswoman.
“The system looks for distorted video content or videos that contain offensive language, title or thumbnail.”
The value of this artificial intelligence system has been further highlighted this month, and Google has released new advertising features for YouTube to target the growing number of direct viewers on YouTube. Marketers can now place stories on their smartphones as they browse the YouTube app. This makes YouTube look more like Facebook’s Instagram, and it can help get more advertising revenue that currently flows to Facebook.
Although Google did not disclose YouTube’s financial data, according to RBC Capital Markets, the video service revenue last year was more than 20 billion US dollars. Improvements in the homepage viewing experience, as well as new ways of presenting ads, are likely to generate more revenue.
The way forward
However, YouTube’s artificial intelligence software can only do so much at the moment. The machine can’t automatically resolve what’s happening in the video or what it says, especially if there are no subtitles to help. The total number of videos uploaded to YouTube every minute is more than 450 hours. The company cites this huge amount of data to excuse the artificial intelligence software from time to time.
Currently, YouTube has resolved the advertiser’s resistance to the video service. Chris Apostle, chief media officer at advertising agency iCrossing, said marketers are now confident in the company’s ability to handle brand safety concerns.
Bloomberg pointed out that YouTube is full of videos with extreme and misleading content, and the company has been criticized for not taking adequate measures to deal with it. But now, YouTube can at least clean up the home page of the site with their new YouTube Junk video classifier.
So guys what do you think? Has YouTube finally got their game right? Will the upcoming years see more and more growth for YouTube? Do let us know in the comments section below!
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