YouTube revealed on 11 December it would better “tackle harassment” with its strengthened anti-harassment policy.
After being repeatedly accused of allowing hate speech, the video streaming platform said it will ban “veiled or implied threats” and insults based on race and sexuality. It also said it will “demonetize” the channels that keep breaking its rules by turning off their ad revenues.
“We remain committed to ensuring that spirited debate and a vigorous exchange of ideas continue to thrive here. However, we will not tolerate harassment,” said Matt Halprin, Youtube’s Vice President.
Halprin says a veiled threat is content “simulating violence” or language “suggesting physical violence may occur.” He explained that Youtube was under the pressure to find a balance between allowing freedom of expression and keeping hateful speech to a minimum.
“Beyond threatening someone, there is also demeaning language that goes too far. We will no longer allow content that maliciously insults someone based on protected attributes such as their race, gender expression, or sexual orientation.”, he said.
“If this behavior continues, we’ll take more severe action including issuing strikes or terminating a channel altogether”, Halprin added.