LONDON. – YouTube has suspended Russell Brand’s channels from making money from adverts for “violating” its “creator responsibility policy”.
The video platform said it was taking action “to protect” its users.
It comes after the Metropolitan Police received a report of an alleged sexual assault in 2003, in the wake of further allegations about the star.
Over the weekend the comedian and actor was accused of rape and sexual assaults between 2006 and 2013, which he denies.
“If a creator’s off-platform behaviour harms our users, employees or ecosystem, we take action,” a YouTube spokesperson said yesterday.
The move also comes after the remaining shows of Brand’s Bipolarisation tour were postponed.
In recent years, the former TV and radio personality has repositioned himself, posting regular videos about spirituality, anti-establishment politics and, recently, UFOs, to his 6.6 million subscribers.
YouTube’s decision to block his revenue streams applies to “all channels that may be owned or operated” by the 48-year-old, it confirmed to the BBC.
Other channels associated with his main YouTube page include Awakening With Russell, Stay Free With Russell Brand and Football Is Nice, which have about 500,000 subscribers between them.
While YouTube noted that such bans are rare, it pointed to previous examples including the suspension of adverts from the channels of Slovak internet personality David Dobrik and US YouTuber and make-up artist James Charles.
Speaking to the Guardian on Monday, Sara McCorquodale, chief executive of social media analysis agency CORQ, said Brand’s YouTube channel would “most likely” be “making £2,000 to £4,000 per video, not taking into account any affiliate deals and brand sponsorships that might be running in the background”.
How do YouTubers make money?
There are lots of different ways for people to make money on YouTube.
One of the most obvious is through ad revenue.
After gaining enough viewers, YouTubers can have ads running before and during their videos, earning varying amounts.
One YouTuber with half a million subscribers recently showed the BBC they made around £10,000 from a video with 1.5 million views.
But the exact money made from videos can vary dramatically and be much lower – or even higher – than this.
Other ways of making money include channel memberships, where people subscribe to see more of your content, as well as super chat and super thanks, where a viewer can pay to have their message to the creator appear more prominently.
But the big way YouTubers make money is through sponsorships, known as “spons” in the community.
At the top of the description of all but his most recent video, in which he commented on the allegations, Brand has a prominently-placed spon.
The companies include a skincare firm, a food supplement powder, a VPN and a coffee alternative. – BBC