YouTube targets fake views in new clampdown

Posted on February 7, 2014


Streaming site YouTube has confirmed it will now ‘audit’ the view count each video claims to have received.

The drive aims to prevent people from inflating viewing figures through artificial means, potentially misleading other users about the quality or popularity of their content.

The audit campaign comes in the wake of concerns that some users on the social network may be paying for views or using ‘redirect’ tools to boost the view counts of their videos.

Now, YouTube has confirmed that it will “periodically” assess each video, validating those views gained through organic means and removing the more fraudulent ones.

Google, which bought YouTube in 2006, has said:

“Some bad actors try to game the system by artificially inflating view counts. They’re not just misleading fans about the popularity of a video, they’re undermining one of YouTube’s most important and unique qualities.

“While in the past we would scan views for spam immediately after they occurred, starting today we will periodically validate the video’s view count.”

Assuaging any worries that brands with YouTube as part of their website marketing strategies may have, the site has confirmed that only a small fraction of the videos on its network will be affected by the clampdown.

For those familiar with Google, it may perhaps come as no surprise that YouTube is looking to crack down on practices that don’t have the user’s best interest at heart. In the past few years, the Californian search giant has introduced a number of updates that reworked the way in which its users are presented with search listings – favouring those sites offering engaging, quality content and penalising those that sought to drive visitor counts through more dubious or unethical means.

Richard is a Web Content Editor at Engage Web. He has had work published in a number of independent magazines and spends much of his spare time writing short stories.
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