How to Handle Spam Commenters On Your YouTube Account?
There was once a time when YouTube was just another video-streaming platform. Back then, there were almost no instances of spamming. However, things changed thick and fast when YouTube transformed into one of the world’s video-streaming juggernauts with in-app ads.
Since the platform’s transformation, YouTube spam comments have appeared left, right, and center. While the folks at YouTube have tried hard at dealing with spam content from their end, they haven’t been very successful at eliminating the problem altogether.
If you’re a content creator on YouTube who has grown tired of spam comments on your channel, you’re at the right place. In this article, we’ll take you through the impact that spam comments can have on your channel and how you can deal with them effectively.
So, read on.
What kind of comments does YouTube consider to be spam?
There are roughly two types of spam comments on YouTube – the ones written by real users and the ones generated by spambots. YouTube, like almost all social media platforms, has countless trolls who may contribute to spamming by writing repetitive comments that have no connection with the videos.
Spam comments from trolls may also contain abusive or inappropriate content, and you can deal with them simply by reporting them. Additionally, you can also ask your subscribers to report these comments, which would eventually result in them being taken down by YouTube.
However, the major problem YouTube is encountering nowadays on the spam front is due to the presence of spambots. YouTube spambots are computer programs that feature software products and Python scripts, and anyone can use them for comment marketing. The objective of YouTube spambots is simple – to redirect traffic to a website from YouTube for earning commission through clicks. Spambots typically generate the following types of comments:
- Comments regarding giveaways and/or surveys promoting pyramid schemes
- Comments including Pay Per Click or PPC referral links
- Misleading comments that may make claims about offering full-length versions of concerts, TV shows, and movies
- Comments featuring links to online stores selling counterfeit products
- Comments consisting of malware links that promote the links by making false claims about earning money
This list is in no way exhaustive, as more different types of spam comments are sure to emerge in the future.
How do spam comments affect a YouTube channel?
For a YouTube channel, having too many spam comments across its videos may result in disastrous consequences. Spam content typically affects the following aspects of a YouTube channel:
- Viewership: Viewers turn to a video’s comments section to look at the conversations that are happening among users. If a certain conversation is engaging enough, viewers are typically tempted to join in and voice their opinion on a video. However, when viewers see that a video’s comments section is filled with spam content, it’s likely to discourage them from participating in genuine conversations. It may also create a poor impression in the mind of a user. For instance, if your videos’ comments sections are filled with spam comments, your viewers may think that you’ve resorted to getting free YouTube comments for boosting engagement. Even the most ardent subscribers of your channel may feel like unsubscribing if they encounter too much in terms of spam.
- Safety: Spam comments that involve redirecting users to external links may jeopardize the safety of your viewers. For example, if a spam comment makes a claim about earning a lot of money by clicking on a link, some of your viewers may be tempted to click on the link. If the link is malicious, your viewers could be in big trouble, as sometimes, spams are nothing but scams that ultimately want to earn money by hook or crook. Some links may also contain malware that may infect users’ computers or mobile devices and attempt to steal personal information and financial details.
- Reach: In recent years, YouTube has taken a firm stand towards channels with poor engagement that rely on spam comments to boost their numbers. Quite simply, if the YouTube algorithm discovers that your channel has a lot of spam comments, it may limit the reach of your channel. In such a scenario, even if the spam comments are not your fault, YouTube might take strict action. In the worst-case scenario, your channel may be temporarily blocked as well. So, if you’re a hardworking content creator who has put a lot of time and effort into your YouTube channel, it may all be in vain if your channel has excessive spam.
The best ways to deal with spam comments
Now that you’re aware of the types of spam content that are out there and what their impact could be on your channel, it’s time to learn how to deal with them. In this section, we’ll share a few steps with you that will help you to find, report, and delete spam comments. Additionally, we’ll also give you vital information on how you can prevent spam commenters from leaving spam comments on your videos in the first place.
- Find the comments: The first step is to find all the spam comments across your videos. You can do this by using the YouTube Creator Studio. First, open YouTube Creator Studio from the website or app and go to the Comments page. You can do this by clicking on ‘Comments’ on the panel on the left-hand side. The Comments page will show you all the comments that users have left on your videos in chronological order. At the top of the page, you’ll see three tabs – Published, Held for review, and Likely scam. Click on the Likely scam tab, and you’ll see all the spam comments. However, it’s important to keep in mind that some comments shown in the Likely scam tab may not be spam.
- Go through all the comments and report or delete them: Once you see all the comments in the Likely scam tab, it’s time to go through them individually and then take action. This can be a time-consuming process, especially if there are a lot of comments. However, doing it is well worth the time spent, as it can help you identify comments that are genuine but have been mistakenly sorted by the algorithm as likely spam due to poor comment quality. Next, click or tap the bin icon below the comments to delete them one by one. You can also decide to flag comments by selecting the flag icon right next to the bin icon. The flagging option additionally gives you the option of hiding certain users’ comments on your channel.
- Wait for YouTube’s response: If you deleted the spam comments as mentioned in the previous step, you could skip this step. However, if you have chosen to flag the comments, you’ll have to wait for YouTube to take action. After you flag a comment, YouTube reviews it to ascertain whether a comment violates its Community Guidelines. If it does, YouTube will delete the comment permanently within 24 hours.
- Add users as comment moderators: The three previous steps were all aimed at dealing with spam comments on YouTube after they’ve already been posted. However, now, we’ll turn our attention toward the preventive steps. The most important thing to do from a prevention standpoint is to add comment moderators by selecting the Automated filters tab on the Community page, which you can access from Settings in YouTube Creator Studio. Alternatively, you can click on the three-dot menu beside a comment on the Comments page in YouTube Creator Studio and choose the ‘Add this user as a comment moderator’ option. However, it’s important to remember that you should only add trusted users as comment moderators.
- Moderate comments yourself: Having comment moderators can be incredibly beneficial, as more people are likely to report inappropriate comments. You can also moderate comments yourself by going to the Defaults tab of the Community page under Settings in YouTube Creator Studio. You have four options to choose from under the ‘Comments on your channel’ option – Allow all comments, Hold all comments for review, Hold potentially inappropriate comments for review, or Disable comments. If spam prevention is your goal, we recommend choosing the Hold potentially inappropriate comments for review option.
- Set moderation rules: Through the YouTube Creator Studio, you can also set moderation rules that allow you to approve or hide users and also block certain words and links. You can find these settings in the Automated filters tab on the Community page. While approved users are free to post anything in your videos’ comments sections, hidden users are unable to post comments. Blocking specific links and words can also be effective in filtering spam comments.
Handling spam commenters and their comments can help you manage the mess that spam content can create. We certainly hope that the things discussed in this article are of some use to you for a smoother experience as a content creator on YouTube.
Before putting an end to this article, we’d like to tell you about SubPals, a service that’s meant to boost the growth of new YouTube channels. If you hope to be at the top of the YouTube game one day, you’ve got to start on a solid foundation. Through offerings like free YouTube likes, subscribers and comments, SubPals can help you do that.
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