The shout-out Dilemma - is the new Influencer category against social media ToS


Hey everyone! I would really appreciate any help here, especially from those who have hands-on experience.

I have a YouTube channel and I have been using it here on Fiverr to offer organic promotion to buyers on this social media. Essentially, I offered advertisement inside of my new and old videos. Recently, I updated the gig according to the new Influencer Marketing guidelines.

Now, after two years and more than 100 5-star reviews, the gig was rejected because of the Third party TOS violation. It did not feature a copyright image (only a while play button on a red background) and its name was “use my youtube channel for your promotion”. This breaks my heart but I know I’ll never get it back and sending a request for a review of the decision would be like sending a letter to both god and the president.

So, here’s my dilemma: in theory, there is a part in the YouTube ToS that stops people from selling services directly on the network (you would have to use Adwords for that).However, Fiverr itself allows Influencer Marketing option that provides the ability to choose social media networks, including YouTube.

My questions is this - if I want to sell shout-out gigs for my YouTube channel, how should I formulate my gig so it doesn’t get flagged?

Any help would be more than awesome!



That’s a really good question considering that YT themselves are changing rules all the time and most of the time innocent parties get caught in the middle. Haven’t experienced this myself but have encountered stories of such but I think it’s best to do this kind of thing on your own site or blog as there’s no telling what will happen to your channel if you go through with this. Whether or not the new category is against social media ToS will depend on the product/service in question.

It’s a double edge sword in a sense where they (social media) actually allow shout outs for influencer marketing but have qualms about it at the same time.


Hey, thanks for your insight! What is killing me here is the fact that Fiverr provides the option of doing YouTube shout-outs - great!

But, how to make a gig with that so that it doesn’t get flagged for their ToS breach? I’m not looking for the moral high ground and I don’t have a life-isn’t-fair grievance - I just want to have a gig that works. :slight_smile:


@ivicamilaric - if what you want to do is against the youtube TOS? then why would you want to do that?


Everything is against YouTube TOS. In theory, you shouldn’t even leave affiliate links of the product your reviewing, but that would close all the big channels in the world - they all do it. The same goes for direct sponsorships. If that were really true, there wouldn’t be a single Amazon review, makeup or fashion channel in the world - YouTube would close them all.

According to the TOS, if you want to make money on their service, you start placing their ads through Adsense network. That’s the only viable option if you interpret the document to the letter.

However, if Fiverr really wants to adhere to the full extent of the YouTube TOS (not the arbitrary interpretation the YouTube team uses), why allow a formal option of choosing YouTube under the new Influencer category?

It’s third-party ad selling, which is against the YouTube TOS - still, the option is right there in the gig creation menu.


Hmm… Maybe instead of saying my YT channel, how about “use my vlog for your promotion” as it doesn’t hint towards a specific platform.


Thanks, that’s something I had in mind as well - the problem is that you then basically kill-off any search traffic, which is based on keywords - people searching for YouTube promotion use that term front and center. And again, if the Fiverr platform itself is using YouTube as an Influencer option, it makes no sense for me to avoid it.


I’m pretty sure that this does break Youtube TOS. If you were creating a product promotion video for a client, this (in a roundabout way) is fine. What you are suggesting, though, (in the case of old videos at least) is putting links/contextually irrelevant scenes/random pop-up tags on videos. - This most certainly is a breach of Youtube TOS.

Pewdiepie is arguably the best influencer marketer on Youtube. Pay him and he’ll make a video featuring your product or brand, while being sure to highlight the fact he is being paid. Never, however, will you see someone like Pewdiepie go back in time and say, “oh by the way, that video I made about seamonkey cultural dynamics last June is now sponsored by Dominos pizza.” - That ain’t influencer marketing, it’s essentially just spam.


Well, that roundabout is kind of a problem here, because YouTube ToS, it’s very straightforward. Here’s the quote:

  1. General restrictions on use

E. you agree not to use the Service (including the YouTube Player) for any of the following commercial uses unless you obtain YouTube’s prior written approval:

i. the sale of access to the Service
ii. the sale of advertising, sponsorships or promotions placed on or within the Service, or Content;

There’s no form to fill to get that approval and I’m pretty sure no one ever sent a freestyle one.

It is not influencer marketing, I agree, but it’s also not spam. It is advertising content on YouTube (how my old gig was named) - old videos can be branded in the description and end-screen annotation, which is in my view exactly the same as featuring ads on your site or blog - those interested can click on them, others can and will ignore them. The content of the video is never changed or adapted, I’m simply renting out space around my content where the link to the advertiser’s content is clearly described beforehand.

Spam is a process of sending unsolicited messages - I send nothing to no one who is not already on my video - if this is spam, then every other form of advertisement is spam as well. Adsense is spam because it does the precise same thing with its TrueView program.

I get that this is bigger problem for YouTube than influencer marketing because you’re essentially replacing Adsense with your personal program on a smaller scale, cutting them out. But, if I followed the requirement of ToS, I wouldn’t be able to do what Pewdiepie does either - in the ToS, everything is forbidden, so why offer influencer marketing at all here on Fiverr?

Do you think that I can say “I’ll promote your content in my new video” but that I can’t say “I’ll promote your content across my channel”?