There has been much talk recently about YouTube monetization, its recent changes in policy and these changes being the possible reason which for shooting at YouTube headquarters a couple of days ago. Let me be clear here - the shooter is insane and deserves no further acknowledgement. I know many good people at YouTube and Google, through my profession in the eCommerce and Digital Marketing space, and am relieved that everyone survived and no one was more seriously hurt or worse.
As someone that creates videos for fun and to share my own enthusiasm and interests in watches and cars, it is immensely difficult to make money on the YouTube platform. Here's a screenshot of my own metrics over the past year since uploading a dozen or so videos:
I made $123.42 from ads (plus $3 from Adsense from this website) before YouTube changed the monetization policy to requiring at least 1000 subscribers and 4000 hours of watch time for the past 12 months. Also to put things in perspective, if I ever do meet YouTube's new requirements, I would make roughly $200 from ads. Certainly nothing that would make a significant difference in my finances.
My point is this: If you're on the YouTube platform, expecting to get rich quick, then you're doing it for all of the wrong reasons. Money is NOT and should NOT be driving reason to be a YouTuber. Do it for the love of producing videos, giving your viewers the best possible content you can and if you do it well enough, the money will take care of itself. This is the same advice that I often give interns and young people looking for career advice. Never do it for the money, but because you're passionate about it.
The most successful YouTubers like Jon Olsson and Casey Neistat are successful because of their love for what they do and the content that they produce. This clearly shows in the quality of their videos. Sure, they have millions of subscribers and several hundred thousand to millions of views per video, and thus probably making a decent living from YouTube, but it didn't happen overnight.
YouTube is doing the right thing by introducing these new requirements and will actually help small content creators grow our channels and increase user engagement by not having ads in the first place.