YouTube Shorts
YouTube staff claims the short-forms videos are jeopardising long-form content on the platform. Pixabay

If rumours making the rounds online are anything to go by, YouTube employees are worried about Shorts' impact on the platform's long-form videos. YouTube launched Shorts in 2020, but TikTok was one of the first platforms to popularise short video content.

Just two years after its launch, YouTube Shorts had more monthly active users than TikTok. Unsurprisingly, it is one of the most used short-form video platforms by creators.

Last year, Google told shareholders that YouTube Shorts is doing great. Google CEO Sundar Pichai said: "We've seen significant investment in online video, and there's been a ton of innovation, but there are 2 billion logged-in viewers who visit YouTube every single month."

"More people are creating content on YouTube than ever before, and the team remains very focused on trying to help innovate," the top executive added. In a blog post, YouTube also noted that artists active on Shorts saw over 50 per cent of their new channel subscribers coming from their Shorts posts on average.

Causes, effects of YouTube Shorts' popularity

It is worth noting that Shorts require less viewer attention and time commitment compared to long-form videos. Now, insider sources claim the skyrocketing popularity of Shorts is affecting YouTube's ad revenue from long-form videos.

People familiar with YouTube's business told the folks at Financial Times that the platform's ad revenue on long-form video is suffering due to the popularity of Shorts. YouTube has reportedly recorded lower earnings than the same time last year.

Internal metrics attribute this drop in earnings in the last three quarters to the lack of interest from viewers. To make things worse, brands have also deviated their focus to partnering for Shorts content. The lack of viewer interest in long-form videos is also due to the fact that it is easier to consume Shorts.

Long-form vs. short-form videos

Unlike conventional videos, Shorts does not require longer bursts of attention and longer time commitment per video. According to some creators, Shorts are more relatable to the audience, which leads to higher engagement.

Watching conventional YouTube videos, on the other hand, according to one YouTube staffer, is like reading a book with focus and time on hand. Google did not launch Shorts to compete with regular YouTube content, and that shows in the ad revenue split.

YouTube gives creators 55 per cent of the ad revenue from conventional videos, and 45 per cent share from Shorts. Still, creators earn a considerable amount of money from brand deals. Apparently, creating longer videos is more time-consuming for creators since it requires more time to research, record, edit, and upload.

Also, Google is sparing no effort to improve the popular video-sharing platform. In line with this, the search giant is reportedly testing a Shazam-like song recognising feature. Also, it is reportedly planning to introduce a three-strike policy for viewers who use ad blockers.