YouTube’s executives reveal their “algatorial” curation method exclusively to Billboard.
From June 2020 to June 2021, YouTube paid more than $4 billion to the music industry, the company announced this month -- a much-increased sum from the world's biggest video platform where product reviews, how-to videos, and vlogs share the spotlight with music. Rights holders have historically complained that YouTube hasn’t been paying enough for its offering, but the 2020 payout was a notable jump from 2019, when YouTube paid over $3 billion to music rights holders, thanks in part to its powerful algorithms that surfaces the music each user desires. Unlike other streaming services, YouTube Music relies entirely on algorithms for each of its over 10,000 playlists serving more than 2 billion monthly active users and 30 million subscribers to its Music and Premium offerings. But even without a single, purely hand-curated playlist created by YouTube, the company says its human oversight of those algorithms (a concept executives refer to as “algatorial” -- a combination of “algorithm” and “editorial”) has allowed the company to maintain its position as the world’s most-used music platform, despite increasing competition from Spotify, Apple and Amazon. #saiidzeidan #saiidz