Can creators really upload reaction videos to make money on Youtube?

So you’ve probably noticed the trend of making reaction videos to make money on Youtube. On the surface level, reactions videos are now just middle-of-the-road among many various Youtube contents. Indeed, adults watch PewDiePie’s gaming reaction for fun, kids watch Ryan Kaji unboxing advanced toys and get super excited. 

Furthermore, these Youtube influencers have made millions of dollars from the views and subscribers generated from reaction videos. This is also the best evident for the monetization potential of this niche. 

Besides, not only reacting to games and unboxing, there’s always something so captivating about watching someone react to a music video, a TV show, or movie which are our favorite. 

However, the fact that reaction videos can potentially violate Youtube’s copyright policies can be a big hurdle to the creators who want to pull it off. So, check this article to learn how to handle it. 

What are the reaction videos?

What are the reaction videos?

What are the reaction videos?

Just as its name suggests, “reaction videos” are really videos of a person’s emotional reaction to another person, certain thing, or phenomenon. The content on Youtube that received the most responses are dramas, movie trailers, or some viral videos right on the Youtube platforms or other social networking sites.

The reactor can act on his/her own with the script in front of the camera, or it could be a secret “hidden camera” to capture their purely natural feelings.

At that time, they will want to focus on expressing their emotions in a charismatic, humorous way, because excitement and fun are always the easiest to “match” the audience’s viewing behavior. 

Why do audiences love to watch reaction videos?

Through the reaction videos, viewers can see the “reaction” of the creators loving or really hating the music videos, or some cliche and impressive scenes of a movie. These creators do not hesitate to express their emotions with their facial expressions, gestures, eye contacts and body language.

All of their emotions and gestures are expressed very comfortably and honestly. That’s the fun of reaction videos and why so many Youtube users are so fascinated about them. 

On top of that, each video reaction will include a person sitting in front of the camera to just “talk the hind legs off a donkey” and express his/her feelings about something else. However, those people are not talking for the camera solely, but for dozens of other viewers watching the video.

Most YouTubers who do successful video reactions have a very “graceful” way to lead and prolong the conversation with themselves, which help them get millions of video views and increase Youtube watch time

It just felt as if a friend is so down-to-earth to pull out an intriguing topic to talk about all day, and you just crack up every time you see him/her making any sarcastic comments or humorous gestures. 

The truth behind reaction videos to make money on Youtube

“Reaction videos” is a type of content that is suitable for creators who like to judge, give comments and criticize about any subjects on the Internet. However, if you have a YouTube channel full of reaction videos, you may be wondering if you can make money from those videos. 

Copyright infringement

Reaction videos make money - Copyright infringement

Reaction videos make money – Copyright infringement

In fact, you’ve probably acknowledged this, the reaction videos may contain copyright protected materials, meaning they may violate YouTube’s terms of service. 

To be more detailed, reaction videos will often not be able to make money on Youtube if they contain copyrighted material such as movies, music videos, content from other creators, artworks unless you have the copyright owner’s permission.

Furthermore, even if you have licenses like creative comment, or content you use appropriately with a fair use policy, then you won’t make much money. YouTube is very strict on monetized channels due to too much repetitive content on the website.

Disapproval from Youtube Partner Program

Disapproval from Youtube Partner Program

Disapproval from Youtube Partner Program

The most important thing is that if you are preparing to apply for Youtube Partner Program (YPP) after reaching 4000 watch hours and 1000 subscribers, Youtube may not accept your application even though you have met the minimum requirements. .

The channel content review process to allow creators to monetize from YPP takes 30 days to be done. During this time the Youtube’s review team will check the channel thoroughly and if, for example, they see you commenting on a scene in a blockbuster movie that dozens of other channels are doing the same thing, chances are your channel won’t be accepted. 

Reaction videos to make money can be cumbersome!

That being said, we re-emphasize that creators can still make money on Youtube through reaction videos. In fact, there are many channels that not only make reaction videos for entertainment purposes, but they also have to use copyrighted content for research and citations, thereby providing valuable lessons for the audiences. 

Youtube has its own rules to support creators when they want to use copyrighted content to make videos. This is a huge advantage, but at the same time is very cumbersome to apply properly. 

Now, we will go back and talk about copyright infringement. This problem is quite understandable. By putting any movie clip on your video for instance, you are reusing the copyrighted materials of the other content creators. To be more specific, reaction videos are more likely to be removed for copyright claims than other types of videos.

Moreover, Youtube algorithm is always constantly advanced so that it can recognize the use of copyright material and “flag” it, then it reports to the platform and the creators will receive through the Content ID claim.

Content ID Claim

Content ID Claim

Upon receiving this notice, the copyright owner can force Youtube to block, or delete the video of the creator who has used their copyright materials. However, if the creator of the reaction videos felt that the warning was unreasonable, they can depend on the “Fair Use” rule and appeal back to Youtube.

From here things will be very complicated, because only the courts of a certain country have control over Fair Use, not Youtube.

Besides, if creators reuse copyrighted content accepted the Content ID Claim, well, they may have to start over, or edit all the content again (which is ineffective and time-consuming), for example:

  • Cut off the video’s part that are claimed for piracy
  • Delete or swap background music: copyrighted music is one of the fastest ways to be flagged for a copyright complaint, so to avoid this, we recommend  to remove copyrighted music or swap it for music royalty free in the reaction videos. Besides,  you also sometimes have the option of sharing revenue with the original owner of the copyright
  • Revise the content by flexibly adding more news and academic reviews.

Tips for creators to make money from reaction videos

Bear in mind that the content you choose to make your reaction videos isn’t limited to one category or genre. You absolutely can choose from thousands of videos posted every day on Youtube to start researching and planning in detail, from preparation to expression of your personal perspectives. 

The critically important thing here is how you can re-edit the video to avoid the piracy warning from Youtube and other creators.

Join Google Network

Google Network

Google Network

While taking part in Google Network, you will be “protected” to relatively avoid content copyright, registered content ID, use some analytic tools that the Network provides.

On top of that, you will be paid with an amount less than $100 and do not need to be 18 years old, so young people under 18 are able to make money on Youtube.

Make use of editing software

For the output video reaction product to be captivating and beautiful, the editing process is very important. You absolutely can add visual effects and emojis or text to match your opinions and comments during the reaction to stimulate the ability to interact and attract more views and subscribers. 

Currently, there are many popular and easy-to-use video editing software like ProShow, Shortcut, Adobe Premiere,… This is also an opportunity for you to promote your reputation with a personal identity that you want viewers to remember.

Finally, to complete the video editing process, do not forget to create a unique thumbnail with compelling images that express your emotions towards the reaction videos. 

Focus on your reactions

Focus on your reactions

Focus on your reactions

Besides content reuse, the main factor to evaluate whether a video reaction is interesting or not is your reaction and the re-evaluation towards the original video from you.

You must add specific purposes and values ​​to the video, partly to avoid copyright claims, and on the other hand to gain social credibility. 

If you want to react to news, or viral trends on social media, use your real voice to give the comments, and show your face as much as possible in the clip. Besides, if you can’t include the re-used clip multiple times, use the cut images from it to minimize the possibility of violating copyright rules. 

As for music videos, don’t react alone. Youtube has always appreciated human-to-human interaction, so react the MVs with your family and friends to make the video more vibrant, as well as more objective comments and reviews.

Last but not least, for gaming channels, apart from just showing your face and giving feedback, pay attention to talk about your personal and expertise skills in any game genre you’re playing.  

Our wrap-up on reaction videos to make money on Youtube

That being said, join AudienceGain right away if you have any opinions on this article, as well as acknowledge several techniques to avoid copyrighted policies while making reaction videos on Youtube. 


8 March 2021

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8 March 2021

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