After 109,000 Video Removal Appeals Last Quarter, YouTube Says It Reinstated 22%

By 03/02/2020
After 109,000 Video Removal Appeals Last Quarter, YouTube Says It Reinstated 22%

Updated on 3/3 at 9:30 am with tweets from YouTube’s new creator liaison, Matt Koval.

Each quarter, YouTube releases a Community Guidelines Enforcement Report — a transparent glimpse into the video removals that the platform undertook, as well as its reasoning behind the decisions, how the offenses were detected, and more. For the first time in its most recent report, however, YouTube shared some long-requested user data regarding stats on how often it overturns decisions regarding appeals on removed videos.

“Our team is focused on accurately and consistently enforcing our policies,” the company wrote in an email to Tubefilter, “and one of the ways we hold ourselves accountable and measure our success is by making sure that users can easily appeal our decisions and monitoring the rate at which they do.”


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In Q4 of last year, for instance, YouTube said it removed a total of 5.9 million videos for violating its policies. Users appealed 109,000 of those decisions, and as a result, 24,000 videos were reinstated, according to the company — which calculates to a reinstatement rate of 22%. YouTube also notes that while appeals are easily accessible, they are relatively rare. Of the 5.9 million videos removed last quarter, the company pointed out, only 1.9% were appealed.

YouTube’s newly-tapped creator liaison Matt Koval shared some additional context around the company’s 22% reinstatement rate on his new Twitter account, noting that the figure was roughly on par with other platforms like Reddit (19.2%) and Facebook (24.2%). “If our overturn rate was super high it would suggest we make a lot of errors when removing videos in the first place,” he added. “If our overturn rate were much lower it would suggest we don’t ever correct our mistakes.”

The most recent Community Guidelines Enforcement Report also shared several other stats with respect to how YouTube is taking action to enforce its policies. For instance, the company says that 52% of last quarter’s removals were due to spam, while a total of 2.1 million channels were removed in the same time frame — with 89.1% of those due to spam. Additionally, 540 million comments were removed last quarter, YouTube reported.

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