Back in April of 2017 YouTube set a requirement of 10,000 lifetime views. While that threshold provided more information to determine whether a channel followed the community guidelines and policies, it’s been clear over the last few months that they need a higher standard.
As of January 16th 2018 YouTube is changing the eligibility requirement for Adsense monetization to 4,000 hours of watchtime within the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers. And on February 20th 2018, they will implement this threshold across existing channels on the platform, to allow for a 30 day grace period. On that date, channels with fewer than 1,000 subscribers or 4,000 watch hours will no longer be able to earn money on YouTube.
When they reach 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours they will be automatically re-evaluated under strict criteria to ensure they comply with YouTube policies. New channels will need to apply, and their application will be evaluated when they hit these milestones.
YouTube went on to say “Of course, size alone is not enough to determine whether a channel is suitable for monetization, so we’ll continue to use signals like community strikes, spam, and other abuse flags to ensure we’re protecting our creator community from bad actors. As we continue to protect our platform from abuse, we want to remind all of you to follow YouTube’s Community Guidelines, Monetization Basics & Policies, Terms of Service, and Google AdSense program policies, as violating any of these may lead to removal from the YouTube Partner Program.”
You can read the full release from YouTube here – https://youtube-creators.googleblog.com/2018/01/additional-changes-to-youtube-partner.html