Despite numerous reports that ad payments to content creators on YouTube have been shrinking in recent months, there's still a solid amount of money to be had on the world's most popular video site if you can attract enough eyeballs. Consequently, some video owners on the site have taken to artificially inflating their pageview count by employing underhanded strategies such as redirects or even going so far as to buy pageviews.
As a result, Google recently began taking steps to ensure the accuracy of YouTube pageviews, this according to a recent blogpost from the search giant itself.
To help stem this abuse, Google announced that it will begin auditing pageview counts periodically to ensure that everything is above board.
When some bad actors try to game the system by artificially inflating view counts, they’re not just misleading fans about the popularity of a video, they’re undermining one of YouTube’s most important and unique qualities.
As part of our long-standing effort to keep YouTube authentic and full of meaningful interactions, we’ve begun periodically auditing the views a video has received. While in the past we would scan views for spam immediately after they occurred, starting today we will periodically validate the video’s view count, removing fraudulent views as new evidence comes to light.
As for what constitutes a legit YouTube video hit, Google has a support document on the topic over here.