To maintain accuracy and integrity, YouTube is making revisions on how it ranks music videos in its music charts.
The popular video platform announced on Friday, Sept. 13, that only organic views will be counted when calculating its music charts.
Shelling Out Money To Break A Record
Running music videos as ads on YouTube has been a common practice in the industry for a while now. In July, however, the app received backlash after an Indian rapper broke the record for most views within 24 hours after raking 75 million views. The rapper, Badshah, unseated previous record-holder, Korean boy band BTS, who released their song "Boy With Luv" in April and was viewed 74.5 million times within just one day.
A report later revealed that Badshah and his team paid to either embed or promote the music video to significantly increase its view count. Even bigger artists such as Taylor Swift and KPOP group Blackpink have also reportedly done the same to boost their new music.
Aanother report from The Rolling Stone claimed earlier this month that record labels spend between $20,000 and $60,000 to increase views of music videos within 24 hours after release. Some pay up to $100,000 to reach more viewers.
Under YouTube's new policy, record labels and artists are still allowed to purchase ad space on the video platform. Ad views would still be reflected in a music video's total view count.
However, when tallying for the most-watched music video within 24 hours or its own music charts, only organic views will be counted.
"YouTube Music Charts have become an indispensable source for the industry and the most accurate place for measuring the popularity of music listening behavior happening on the world's largest music platform," YouTube stated in a blog post. "Our goal is to ensure YouTube remains a place where all artists are accurately recognized and celebrated for achieving success and milestones."
The post added that current record holders will not be impacted by the rule change. The new rule, meanwhile, does not cover trailers for movies and television shows that also sometimes play as ads on YouTube, reported The Verge.