YouTube made them an offer they couldn't refuse.
YouTube’s Chief Business Officer, Robert Kyncl, announced at the launch event for the site’s Red subscription service that 99% of video content will still be available, TechCrunch reports.
This suggests that a vast majority of top content creators signed YouTube Red‘s revenue share deal, but it’s because they didn’t have much of a choice. YouTube confirmed to TechCrunch that if creators who earn a cut of ad revenue refused to sign the deal, their videos would be completely hidden from public view. They wouldn’t appear in the YouTube Red ad-free service, nor would they appear on YouTube’s regular ad-supported service.
Google, which owns the video-sharing platform, said that this “encouragement” to sign the deal was to ensure consistency for viewers. The company did not want users to subscribe to Red and only afterwards discover that one of their favorite YouTube stars was not available through the ad-free service.
Kyncl claimed that creators will receive “the vast, vast majority of revenue,” but the YouTube Partner Program Terms say otherwise. The terms state that creators are only paid 55% of revenue, compared to Spotify’s 70% and Apple Music’s 71.5%.
YouTube Red is priced at $9.99 per month and gives you access to ad-free videos, offline video, and the ability to play audio from a video in the background on mobile. It will also fund original content, something the site attempted and failed to do back in 2012.