YouTube works to avoid another Logan Paul disaster

In the wake of the Logan Paul controversy, YouTube is trying to reassure advertisers by pledging to “manually review” a significant chunk of the videos on its website.

This means that actual workers, not just algorithms, will review the videos that are within “Google Preferred,” YouTube’s special program for premium advertising.

The program was created to convince big advertisers to spend more money on YouTube. It fences off the site’s most popular videos and lets companies buy ads alongside those videos.

Paul, a video blogger — or “vlogger” — with millions of fans, was part of Google Preferred until earlier this month, when YouTube punished him for posting a video of a dead body to his channel.

Paul was widely condemned for showing a corpse hanging from a tree in Japan’s Aokigahara forest, also known as “suicide forest,” and laughing about his visit.

So now he’s out of the program — but YouTube is facing further scrutiny for its belated reaction to the Paul controversy.

Brand advertisers definitely do not want their commercials showing up next to a vlogger’s visit to a “suicide forest.” So YouTube said Tuesday that it is “changing Google Preferred so that it not only offers the most popular content on YouTube, but also the most vetted.”

All of the channels included in the program “will be manually curated,” according to a statement, “and ads will only run on videos that have been verified to meet our ad-friendly guidelines.”

YouTube previously said that it would be stepping up its efforts to weed out inappropriate content.

It announced a number of other changes on Tuesday, including stricter guidelines for becoming part of the YouTube Partner Program, which allows a user to start making money from ads on the site.