Throughout the next year, YouTube plans to pay $100 million to creators who use YouTube Shorts, its TikTok competitor. The goal is to encourage creators to sign up for and continue to post to its new service, which does not otherwise provide a built-in way for creators to make money.
YouTube says it will contact creators on a monthly basis, looking for those who have the most engagement and views. According to YouTube, “thousands” of creators could be paid each month, and anyone who posts to Shorts is eligible. The only stipulation is that their videos must be original content and, of course, follow YouTube's community guidelines.
In March, YouTube launched Shorts in the United States. The short videos appear in YouTube's mobile app, and you can swipe from one to the next in an endless full-screen feed, just like TikTok (or Instagram Reels or Snapchat Spotlight).
Other companies have used the same strategy to entice creators to stay on their platform.
In July 2020, TikTok announced a $200 million creators fund, and Snapchat paid out $1 million per day for a period of time after its TikTok competitor, Spotlight, launched in November 2020.
Payments will initially be available in the United States and India, the two regions where Shorts has been launched, but YouTube intends to expand its availability as the service expands to more regions. There is no set date for when YouTube will begin accepting payments. The fund, according to YouTube, will last from its inception this year until some point in 2022.