Like any social network, YouTube maintains a set of rules and guidelines governing the use of its services. Whether you comment on videos or upload your own videos, you are expected to follow them. If you break any of these rules or upload content that infringes copyright, your account may be disabled. This is usually permanent, although in certain cases you can appeal your case and attempt to recover your account.
Reasons for disabled accounts
Your account may be deactivated for three main reasons. The first is violating the Community Guidelines and Terms of Service that you both agreed to sign up for. This is about the content of your videos and how you behave towards other people on YouTube. The second addresses predatory behavior such as harassment and sexual comments, as well as spam. The third is when your videos are repeatedly flagged for copyright infringement.
Request more information
If your account has been disabled but you’re not sure why, you can request more information from Google by contacting support. Google provides a special form that asks for the email address you used to sign up for this account, and an alternative email address through which you can be contacted. Submit this form and you will be informed why your account has been deactivated. This form can be found in the Resources section.
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Appeal a deactivated account
If your account has been disabled due to copyright issues, you can complete a Copyright Counter-Notice. This procedure is used when you are certain that your video was removed in error or misidentified. Since you do not have access to YouTube to complete this form, you must mail it to YouTube’s headquarters. See the Resources section for the necessary information. Note that you should only fill out this form if you are absolutely sure that the deactivation was a mistake. You could face legal consequences if you abuse this system.
YouTube usually sends you a warning before your account is deactivated. If you’ve violated any of the Community Guidelines or if one of your videos infringes copyright, you’ll receive an email warning and your video will be removed. Finally – for example in the case of repeat offenders – your account can be permanently deactivated. At this point, the only way to regain control of your account is to appeal. An account’s deactivated status does not expire, which means the only way to restore it is to appeal.