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YouTube Creator Awards

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Jan Zimmermann (left) and Tim Lehmann (right) holding their channel Gewitter im Kopf – Leben mit Tourettede's Silver and Gold Creator Awards

YouTube Creator Awards, commonly known as YouTube Play Buttons or YouTube Plaques, are a series of awards from YouTube that aim to recognize its most popular channels. They are based on a channel's subscriber count but are offered at the sole discretion of YouTube. Each channel is reviewed before an award is issued, to ensure that the channel follows the YouTube community guidelines.[1] YouTube reserves the right to refuse to hand out a Creator Award, which it has done to select channels with horror or political content as well as various critics.[2][3]

Benefits and awards

Benefit levels

These levels do not include physical and announcement awards but offer alternative benefits instead:

  • Graphite, for channels that reach or surpass 100 subscribers. It allows a creator to have a custom URL such as youtube.com/c/Example instead of a random string of letters.
  • Opal, for channels that reach or surpass 1,000 subscribers. It is also one of three requirements to apply to the YouTube Partner Program for monetization, the other two being a minimum of 4,000 total viewer watch hours in the past 12 months and a review of the channel's content to determine eligibility. Channels with monetization can also enable Super Chat, while gaming channels can also enable channel membership.[4]
  • Bronze, for channels that reach or surpass 10,000 subscribers. If a channel is monetized, this level adds a Spreadshop[5] or Teespring monetization option.[6]

Awards

When a verified YouTube channel reaches a specific milestone and is deemed eligible for a YouTube Creator Reward,[1] they are awarded a relatively flat trophy in a metal casing with a YouTube play button symbol. The trophies are of different sizes: each button and plaque gets progressively bigger with the channel's subscriber count.[7] The Silver and Gold awards were introduced at VidCon 2012, with the Diamond award being introduced at VidCon 2015.[8][9] The Creator Awards are made by the New York firm, Society Awards. [10]

There are currently three different tiers of rewards,[1] plus a fourth and fifth that have been awarded a few times:

  • YouTube Silver Play Button 2.svg The Silver Creator Award, for channels that reach or surpass 100,000 subscribers. The old version was made of nickel-plated cupronickel alloy.[11] The new version (as of March 1, 2017) is 92% nickel, 5% carbon and 2.5% zinc, with traces of other metals.[12] In March 2018, the look of the Silver Play Button was updated from a metal button housed within a window box with the channel's name printed on the front glass pane to a cleaner-looking flat designed metal plaque award featuring the channel's name embossed on it.[13][14] Channels at this level are also eligible to apply for a digital verification badge.[15]
  • YouTube Gold Play Button 2.svg The Gold Creator Award, for channels that reach or surpass one million subscribers. It is made of gold-plated brass.[11] In March 2018, the look of the Gold Play Button was updated from a metal button housed within a window box with the channel's name printed on the front glass pane to a cleaner-looking flat designed metal plaque award featuring the channel's name embossed on it.[13][16][17]
  • YouTube Diamond Play Button.svg The Diamond Creator Award, for channels that reach or surpass ten million subscribers. It is made of silver-plated metal inset with a large piece of colorless crystal in the shape of a play button triangle.[18][19] When introduced, 35 channels qualified for the award.[20] As of February 6, 2021, there are 797 channels that have reached this level.[21]
  • YouTube Ruby Play Button 2.svg The Custom Creator Award, for channels that reach or surpass 50 million subscribers. It is absent from the Creators Award page. PewDiePie gave the nickname of Ruby Creator Award to this award, as he received a ruby-colored award in the shape of his channel's logo. The color can vary per creator, however: for example, T-Series received a colorless award, while Blackpink received a black award on top of a pink base. Channels with a dagger (dagger) symbol have presented their Custom Creator Award to the public. As of February 2021, eighteen channels have reached this level, including:[21]
  1. PewDiePiedagger (December 8, 2016)[22][23][24]
  2. T-Seriesdagger (June 27, 2018)[25][26]
  3. 5-Minute Crafts (February 21, 2019)[27]
  4. Cocomelon (June 7, 2019)[28]
  5. SET India (June 20, 2019)
  6. Canal Kondzilladagger (June 21, 2019)[29]
  7. WWE (October 24, 2019)
  8. Justin Bieber (February 3, 2020)
  9. Zee Music Company (February 7, 2020)
  10. Like Nastya Vlog (March 13, 2020)
  11. Dude Perfect (March 24, 2020)
  12. Kids Diana Show (March 30, 2020)
  13. Vlad and Niki (August 18, 2020)
  14. Zee TV (September 2, 2020)
  15. Blackpinkdagger (October 4, 2020)[30]
  16. Marshmello (November 22, 2020)
  17. MrBeast (January 3, 2021)
  18. Big Hit Labels (January 9, 2021)
  19. Goldmines Telefilms (27 February 2021)
  20. Movieclips (27 February 2021)
  • YouTube Red Diamond Play Button.svg The Red Diamond Creator Award, for channels that reach or surpass 100 million subscribers. Inspired by the Diamond Creator Award, it features a play button triangle with a large dark red crystal. It is also absent from the Creators Awards page. There are currently three channels that have reached this level:
  1. T-Series (May 29, 2019)[31][32]
  2. PewDiePie (August 25, 2019)[33][32]
  3. Cocomelon (December 12, 2020)
  4. SET India (March-April 2021 (Not Confirmed))

Criticism

The awards are based on the number of subscribers. In an article in October 2019, TechCrunch reported "the number of subscribers" is a "metric that can be gamed by bots".[34]

References

  1. ^ a b c "YouTube Creator Rewards". YouTube. Archived from the original on August 25, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  2. ^ Weiss, Geoff (February 6, 2018). "YouTube On 'Play Button' Awards: "Not All Creators Who Apply Will Receive Awards" - Tubefilter". Tubefilter.com. Archived from the original on June 13, 2018. Retrieved June 9, 2018.
  3. ^ Alexander, Julia (February 2, 2018). "YouTube says 'not all creators who apply' for Creator Awards will receive them". Polygon.com. Archived from the original on June 12, 2018. Retrieved June 9, 2018.
  4. ^ "Channel memberships eligibility, policies, & guidelines - YouTube Help". YouTube Help. Archived from the original on April 2, 2019. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  5. ^ "Spreadshop Partners with YouTube to Grow Merchandise Sales Globally". Business Wire. Greensburg, Pennsylvania. November 12, 2020. Retrieved January 20, 2021.
  6. ^ Alexander, Julia (June 21, 2018). "YouTube partners with Teespring to help creators sell official merchandise". Polygon. Archived from the original on August 22, 2018. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  7. ^ "YouTube Creator Hub". YouTube. Archived from the original on February 1, 2017. Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  8. ^ Jcohen, Joshua (June 29, 2012). "YouTube Gives 24-Karat Gold 'Play Button' to Channels with 1M+ Subs". Tubefilter. Retrieved January 14, 2021.
  9. ^ "YouTube Gives New Diamond Play Button To Channels With 10 Million Subscribers". Tubefilter. July 24, 2015. Retrieved January 14, 2021.
  10. ^ Watts Jr, James D. "Some of the most famous trophies in the entertainment world get their finishing touches in Grove". Tulsa World. Retrieved September 2, 2020.
  11. ^ a b "What is the Gold Play Button REALLY Made Of?". YouTube. Archived from the original on September 3, 2019. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  12. ^ "What is the NEW Silver Play Button REALLY made of?!". YouTube. Archived from the original on September 4, 2019. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  13. ^ a b "YouTube's silver and gold play buttons are getting a new look". SocialBlade.com. Archived from the original on June 15, 2018. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
  14. ^ "YouTube's Silver and Gold play Button Awards Get Redesigned". Youtubermag.com. Archived from the original on June 16, 2020. Retrieved June 1, 2018.
  15. ^ McPhie, Jonathan (September 19, 2019). "Updates to YouTube's verification program". YouTube Creator Blog. Archived from the original on September 20, 2019. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  16. ^ Acuna, Kirsten (July 19, 2012). "YouTube Is Rewarding Its Most Popular Users With Gold". Business Insider. Archived from the original on April 21, 2016. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  17. ^ Cohen, Joshua (June 29, 2012). "YouTube Gives 24-Karat Gold 'Play Button' to Channels with 1M+ Subs". Tubefilter. Archived from the original on April 9, 2016. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  18. ^ Brouwer, Bree (July 24, 2015). "YouTube Gives New Diamond Play Button To Channels With 10 Million Subscribers". Tubefilter. Archived from the original on April 10, 2019. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  19. ^ Dillon, Poppy (August 3, 2015). "YouTube Announced Diamond Play Button". TenEighty. Archived from the original on January 17, 2019. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  20. ^ "YouTube Announces Diamond Play Button". Retrieved September 2, 2020.
  21. ^ a b "Top 5000 Subscribed YouTube Channels (Sorted by Subscriber Count)". Archived from the original on February 24, 2020. Retrieved February 27, 2020.
  22. ^ @YouTube (August 25, 2019). "Married to @marziapie 💍Revived our love of Minecraft ⛏️ Reached 100 million subscribers on YouTube ✔️ What a month to celebrate and congratulate @PewDiePie 👊" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  23. ^ "PewdiePie's video on receiving the award". YouTube. Archived from the original on April 7, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  24. ^ "YouTube Sends PewDiePie Custom Ruby Play Button To Commemorate 50 Million Subscribers". TubeFilter.com. Archived from the original on April 27, 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  25. ^ @KEEMSTAR (September 11, 2018). "YouTube awarded @TSeries with a 50 Million Play Button" (Tweet). Retrieved September 30, 2018 – via Twitter.
  26. ^ "Photographic image". Vignette.wikia.nocookie.net. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  27. ^ "UC295-Dw_tDNtZXFeAPAW6Aw YouTube Stats, Channel Statistics - Socialblade.com". socialblade.com. Archived from the original on February 24, 2017. Retrieved May 24, 2019.
  28. ^ "Cocomelon was the first nursery rhyme to hit 50 million subscribers in the video". youtube.com. Retrieved June 7, 2019.
  29. ^ "KondZilla celebra os 50 milhões de inscritos" [KondZilla celebrates 50 million subscribers]. kondzilla.com (in Portuguese). July 17, 2019. Retrieved December 12, 2020.
  30. ^ "BLACKPINK Becomes The First Korean YouTube Channel To Receive The Ruby Play Button". koreaboo.com. December 1, 2020. Retrieved December 2, 2020.
  31. ^ Leskin, Paige (May 31, 2019). "Bollywood music channel T-Series beat out PewDiePie after a months-long battle to become the first YouTube channel to reach 100 million subscribers". Business Insider. Retrieved April 3, 2020.
  32. ^ a b Weiss, Geoff (September 9, 2019). "YouTube Forges New 'Red Diamond Creator Award' For Channels With 100 Million Subscribers". TubeFilter. Archived from the original on March 27, 2020. Retrieved April 3, 2020.
  33. ^ Alexander, Julia (August 26, 2019). "PewDiePie becomes the first individual YouTube creator to hit 100 million subscribers". The Verge. Archived from the original on August 26, 2019. Retrieved April 3, 2020.
  34. ^ Perez, Sarah (September 19, 2019). "YouTube overhauls its problematic verification program". Archived from the original on September 19, 2019. Retrieved October 22, 2019.