YouTube Shorts is taking on TikTok with one big move: money. | Image: YouTube

In its ongoing battle with TikTok for vertical video supremacy, YouTube is about to play its most valuable card. It’s getting ready to turn on aggressive monetization for Shorts, its shortform vertical video format, and promising to help millions of creators make money on the platform.

Starting early next year, Shorts will be part of the YouTube Partner Program, meaning those who qualify can start getting a share of the ad money generated in Shorts. YouTube is also making it easier for creators who don’t qualify for the program to make money through tips, subscriptions, and merch sales. (The New York Times first reported the news.) The goal is to offer more and better monetization options than TikTok and potentially win over (and win…

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