YouTube now requires users to declare if they are fan accounts

YouTube now requires users who run fan accounts to “make it obvious” in their channel name or handle that they don’t actually represent the company or artist that their account revolves around. That’s according to an update spotted earlier by 9to5Google, which says the new impersonation policy goes into effect on August 21st, 2023.

Previously, YouTube’s policies never carved out rules for fan accounts. It simply stated that channels designed to impersonate other channels or specific people aren’t allowed on the platform. But now, fan accounts must be clear that they aren’t affiliated with whoever their accounts are dedicated to or else risk having their account or channel deleted.

“Content intended to impersonate a person or channel is not allowed on YouTube,” YouTube spokesperson Ivy Choi says in a statement to The Verge. “Starting today, to further protect Creators from impersonation and help viewers better identify content from fan channels, we’re requiring fan channels to explicitly state so in their channel name or handle.”

Under the new rules, YouTube says any channels that claim to be a fan account in their description but end up “posing as another’s channel and reuploading their content” won’t be allowed. The company adds that the update will “help genuine fan channels know exactly how you can celebrate your favorite creators” and that it also protects “original creators from content and channels that are impersonating them.”