YouTube will begin sharing ad revenue with Shorts creators on February 1st

The company has started rolling out a new Partner Program agreement to facilitate the change.

Screenshot via YouTube

YouTube's long-awaited revenue-sharing program for Shorts creators is nearly ready. Starting today, the company is rolling out a new Partner Program agreement ahead of February 1st, when creators can begin earning ad share revenue on their Shorts views. Creators have until July 10th to accept YouTube's new Partner Program terms. As part of the change, the company is introducing new "Monetization Modules" to give creators more flexibility over how they earn money on YouTube — though the company recommends accepting all of them to unlock your full earning potential on the platform. As previously announced, creators with at least 1,000 subscribers and more than 10 million views on Shorts over a 90-day period can apply for the Partner Program. They then need to accept the new "Shorts Monetization Module."

With Shorts revenue sharing rolling out, YouTube notes its $100 million creator fund is going away. However, the company expects most fund recipients to earn more through revenue sharing than they did through the fund. The formula YouTube has devised for determining how much each creator will make for their Shorts is complicated due to the involvement of music licensing. As YouTube users watch Shorts, the company will display ads between clips in the Shorts Feed. YouTube says the money generated by those ads will go towards paying music licensing companies and creators through a shared pool the company will divvy out at the end of each month. How much money ends up going to the creator pool will depend on the number of musical tracks creators feature in their Shorts. If you upload a clip with no music, then all the revenue associated with that video will go toward the creator pool. Conversely, when it comes to a Short with a single song, one-third of the related revenue will go toward paying for licensing. In a Short with two songs, two-thirds will go toward licensing.

Once that's all sorted out, YouTube will determine how to distribute the creator fund. The company will dole out the fund based on a creator's share of total Shorts views. So say your videos accounted for 5 percent of all eligible Shorts views in your country for the month of February, you would then get 5 percent of the money in the fund, whether you used licensed music in your Shorts or not. YouTube then takes its 55 percent revenue cut, leaving you with 45 percent of what's left. If your contribution to the Creator Pool was $1,000 one month, you would get $450 once everything is said and done.