Beware: Patreon Is Watching


If you plan to follow in Dave Jackson’s footsteps and make a car payment with your Patreon funds, be aware the company has human eyes on you.

Hate speech will not be allowed on the platform so you may want to avoid getting close to that line if you’d like to make money using their service. And, they have real people monitoring their service, not algorithms.

As Jack Rhysider pointed out in a blog post, podcasters can make money using Patreon, if their content is strong enough of course, by offering superfans bonus content. And, as The New York Times points out a Pokemon Go community is the top Patreon earner, making up to $500,000 a month.

In terms of the content, keeping it away from the lines of hate is your best bet. The Times points out that Patreon has human moderators. “They give warnings and reach out to talk to offenders, presenting options for “education” and “reform.” And, the have a division called “Trust and Safety,” headed by Jaqueline Hart. She tells the Times that her team watches for and will investigate complaints about any content posted on Patreon and on other sites like YouTube and Facebook that violates what it defines as hate speech. That includes “serious attacks, or even negative generalizations, of people based on their race or sexual orientation.”

James Cridland from Pod News reported on Patreon’s eviction policy even before The Times.

Earlier this month Patreon booted anti-feminist Carl Benjamin, who calls himself Sargon of Akkad. They say he used racist language on YouTube. Milo Yiannopoulos was also kicked off the site one day after he opened an account.

Despite the fact that everyone has their own definition of where hate speech begins Patreon seems to be taking an aggressive approach to anything they decide is even close.