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Study: Videos with children under 13 on YouTube gain three times as many views as other videos

Videos with the words “Fortnite”, “prank” and “worst” in the titles are five times more popular than average videos.

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Pew Research Center conducted a study of content uploaded to YouTube. Scientists have come to the conclusion that the most popular on the platform are videos with children up to 13 years of age, and also found out what mentions of words in headlines helps to get more views.

The researchers analyzed the videos uploaded to the service in the first week of 2019. The sample included videos from 43,770 channels, which had at least 250 thousand subscribers. The researchers came to the following conclusions:

  • YouTube produces a huge amount of content – in a week the authors uploaded 48,486 hours of video to the service. A person who spends 9 hours a day on videos will take 16 years to watch it all;
  • Only 17% percent of the videos analyzed were in English;
  • The most popular on the platform are videos with children’s content and videos with children up to 13 years old. Content with children under the age of 13, regardless of the target audience, scored three times more views than videos without children;
  • A small part of the video, simultaneously addressed to a children’s audience and with children under 13, turned out to be the most popular on the site. The researchers note that according to YouTube’s rules, children under the age of 13 are not allowed to use the service independently, there is a separate application for them – YouTube Kids;
  • The most popular content in categories related to video games – he scored the highest number of views per week. Following are the categories “Cars”, “Food”, “Toys”, “Sport”, “Beauty and Fashion”, “Technique”, “News and Politics”, “Music”, “Hobbies and Skills”;
  • If you add certain words to the title, the video will get more views. Rollers with the words “Fortnite”, “Prank”, “ASMR”, “Challenge”, “Superhero”, “Anboxing” in the titles received five times more views than the average video without mentioning such words in the headlines;
  • Clickbate expressions like “worst”, “mad”, “exhaustive” also gain a lot of views;
  • The mention of Donald Trump in the titles of the videos also helps to attract the attention of service users. In the headlines of 36% of the politics and news videos, the words “President” or “Trump” were mentioned;
  • Crossposting to other social networks helps the clips to gain views. Seven out of ten videos that were posted on Twitter or Instagram have gained more views than those that remained only on YouTube.

A YouTube spokesman told The Verge that the company “cannot confirm the results of the Pew survey,” adding that “the most popular categories on the service are humor, music, sports, and instructions.”

The Ace Family, one of the largest family channels on YouTube, where children often appear, is gaining 10 million views on videos. Even interested in dangerous pranks, Jake Paul invited his family to live in his house to shoot videos with their four-year-old son.

In February 2019, an American blogger discovered videos on YouTube that resemble child porn. After that, a scandal unfolded around the platform: users blamed theservice for organizing a community of pedophiles on the resource, and large companies like Disney, Nestle and Epic Games withdrew advertising budgets. In June, the US government began checking the safety of children on the platform.

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