Greetings lovelies and happy 2020! ✨

I hope the new year is treating you all well. Today I have a few things I’d like to share with you.

It seems that YouTube is trying to force me into the shadows, demonetizing my entire account under the guise of ‘content created for the purpose of sexual gratification’.

I’m generally not one to speak on the negative but I feel attention needs to be drawn to this issue not only because of the ongoing ’shadow-censorship’ rapidly spreading across the social media platforms but in addition, the manner in which it was handled.

YouTube gave me no notice of this action – no notification, no email, no explanation, nothing, and no way to appeal it.

Under research, I discovered that many other YouTube creators are dealing with similar issues.

This accusation and action toward my content deeply saddens and concerns me. (This response has nothing to do with finances. I make pennies each month with my YouTube account.) Since I was not notified nor given any reasoning, I can unfortunately only assume my content is being demonized due to the fact that my content is primarily based around pole dance.

Unfortunately, YouTube has set up their platform to allow no contact with them, so though I wrote this email to them in hopes of a resolution, I immediately received an auto reply to my email stating ‘you’ve reached out to an email address that is not supported’ and have had no success reaching them any other way to date. Le-sigh. 🤷.

(I will post updates at the end of this article as events transpire.)

So here it is – my ‘undeliverable’ letter to YouTube:


YouTube Support Team,

My channel was recently demonetized.

I received no notice, no notification, nor explanation on why this decision was made.

Currently upon logging in to YouTube and visiting the monetization section of my account I see the following:

“Your channel is no longer eligible to monetize. Upon a recent review, we found that a significant portion of your channel is not in line with YouTube’s monetization policies. Please review our feedback below and make changes.

Review feedback
In our review, we found content on your channel that is not in line with the following guidelines. To monetize, your channel must comply with all YouTube monetization policies. Please review your channel and make changes. Changes can include editing or deleting videos and updating video metadata.

Sexually gratifying content. Content containing sexual themes or content isolated for the purpose of sexual gratification.”

(A screenshot of the above (viewed under my monetization tab) below:)

YouTube Channel Monetization Screenshot

Community guidline/monetization policies state “Explicit content meant to be sexually gratifying (like pornography) is not allowed on YouTube. Videos containing fetish content will be removed or age-restricted. In most cases, violent, graphic, or humiliating fetishes are not allowed on YouTube. Sexually explicit content featuring minors and content that sexually exploits minors is not allowed on YouTube. Don’t post content on YouTube if it has any of the items below.

* Depiction of genitals, breasts, or buttocks (clothed or unclothed) for the purpose of sexual gratification
* Pornography depicting sexual acts, genitals, or fetishes for the purpose of sexual gratification
* Masturbation or fondling of genitals, breasts, or buttocks
* Using or displaying sex toys to provide viewers with sexual gratification
* Celebrity wardrobe accidents or nude photo leaks
* Violent, graphic, or humiliating fetish content where the purpose is sexual gratification
* Nudity or partial nudity for the purpose of sexual gratification
* Explicit or implied depiction of sex acts for the purpose of sexual gratification
* Animated sex acts, pornography, or fetish content
* Non-consensual sex acts or unwanted sexualization
* Bestiality or promotion of bestiality
* Incest or promotion of incest
* Aggregating content for the purpose of sexual gratification
* Any sexual content involving minors
* Please note this is not a complete list.”

YouTube claims they remove the above content (none of which I have ever had on my account – see my account status below).

YouTube Status Screen Shot

My content is NOT created for the purpose of sexual gratification. My content is created with art, fitness, wellbeing and body positive messaging at its core.

I am very active on my account and my viewers are very well aware that I (1.) do not tolerate bullying, shaming, etc and (2.) don’t welcome the exceptionally rare few that do inevitably visit to objectify my content – and I block them.

The individuals I create for view my content for inspiration, advice on the sport of pole dancing (and other circus arts/aerials), artistic fulfillment and for our overall shared love for the aerial arts.

Please see below my latest eight comments for example. These are not comments from people objectifying me or my content. These are comments from people who appreciate art, wish to begin a new sport or desire advice on aerials and/or appreciate the aerial arts. My community is clearly not engaging in any sort of sexual, lewd or inappropriate behavior.

YouTube Comment Screenshot

In addition, my viewers are primarily women.

(Views – Last 28 days)
YouTube View Screenshot (Last 28 days)

(Views – Last 365 days)
YouTube Views Screenshot (Last 365 days)

(Views – Lifetime)
YouTube Views Screenshot (Lifetime)

I often see the percentage of women vs men viewing my content to be in the 80%+ range. Being a married, heterosexual, wife and mother of two, I do not see evidence, based on your analytics, that implies I am producing content ‘ isolated for the purpose of sexual gratification’.

YouTube Views Screenshot (Men vs Women)

Given I was not notified nor presented any reasoning behind my account demonetization, I can unfortunately only assume my content is being demonized due to the fact that my content is primarily based around pole dance.

I am an artist, athlete, athletic brand ambassador and entrepreneur and I do not believe my content should be demonized simply because I primarily use a vertical pole to express myself and create.

I create my YouTube content to inspire, educate, connect with others and to share my brand and my love for the aerial arts.

Pole has an exceptionally vast practitioner and spectator base. The International Pole Sports Federation (IPSF) is a global organization that has been recognized as an Observer Member by the Global Association of International Sports Federation (GAISF). There are annual World Pole Championships, competitions, studios, performers/performances, teachers, students, practitioners, and lovers of the art across the globe – pole dance is a sport, an art, and a style of dance that different people practice and view for a variety of intentions.

Pole is being taught to men, women and children around the world. The pole dance community is a wonderfully supportive community that includes individuals of all nationalities, religious beliefs and backgrounds as we are a melting pot driven toward betterment and inclusiveness. Anyone can practice the sport or dance and you will see the underlying sentiment ‘it’s not about what our bodies look like but what they can do’ echoed throughout the community from pole’s practitioners.

THIS is what I promote. Inclusiveness. Positive body image. Growth. Mental and physical wellbeing. Love. Kindness. Intelligence. Mindfulness.

I am an artist. A creator. An entrepreneur. A brand ambassador. A woman. A pole dancer. An aerialist. A wife. A mother. I am NOT on YouTube creating with the intent or purpose of sexual gratification.

Thus, I feel that my account has been inaccurately or unfairly restricted and should be remonetized.

If there is a reason YouTube believes my content to be in non-compliance with community guidelines, I would like a list of content and an explanation as to why it is being demonetized.

I’ve been creating for the YouTube platform for almost 10 years now. Individual videos can be deleted, flagged as ‘adult content’ and restricted as such, etc. Besides dance videos (of me artistically expressing myself in a ‘not-for-the-purpose-of-sexual-gratification’ way), my content includes tutorials, blogs, fitness/sport ambassador videos, my aerial related metalworking business’ promotions, and even trips and vacations with my family. I do not believe any of my videos fall under the category of being created for ’the purpose of sexual gratification’ let alone feel my entire account deems being lumped under one giant blanket of content being created for ’sexually gratifying’ purposes.

I have no problem following the rules but the rules need to be clear, consistant and should be communicated with integrity.

Can you please give me more information as to why my entire account was demonetized, a list of specific issues or content that is flagging my account for such, and a comprehensive way for us to move forward in a unified manner.

Since I was not notified nor contacted by anyone at YouTube regarding the decision to demonetize my account, I have no contact to reach out to in attempt to help solve this issue. In addition, there is no way to contact anyone at YouTube via the platform, email, chat, etc. If this message has reached you and you are not equip to answer my questions or address my concerns, please forward to an appropriate department or person that can help assist me.

I look forward to your response.

Ava Madison


I posted the following video to my YouTube account following the incident. Have a read and feel free to share your thoughts.

(Update: Thank you all for the love, support and feedback you poured into the comments section of this video. Hopefully someone at YouTube will see our thoughts.)


UPDATES:
* 1-28-2020 update: I still have yet to successfully contact anyone at YouTube.

* 2-17-2020 update: I’ve made several attempts to contact YouTube over the past many weeks with no response. I’ve edited content (blindly seeing I have no reference to any issues) and reapplied for monetization today. I will update once/if I receive a response.

* 2-26-2020 update: It seems my account is being remonetized. A few days ago I noticed my count reactivated and rising and I currently have individual video controls reinstated. I’ve still received no email or notification of any sort from YouTube so I’m just watching and waiting at this point. Here’s hoping! Thank you all again for your love and support!! 💜


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