YouTube is changing its community guidelines to ban channels and videos promoting white supremacy and discrimination based on age, gender, race, caste, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status, according to the platform’s blog post.
The move has already bared fruit, with thousands of channels removed, including Nazism promoting and other extremist ideologies. “The openness of YouTube’s platform has helped creativity and access to information thrive,” wrote YouTube’s blog post.
The ban will remove neo-Nazi and other extremist propaganda that advocates for segregation or exclusion based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status along with videos on caste discrimination – which has significant implications in India, and “well-documented violent events,” such as the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting and 9/11.
YouTube will no longer allow people to claim in their own videos that these events did not happen. It will also expand efforts to reduce the spread of “borderline content and harmful misinformation,” such as videos that violate the community’s guidelines.
Flat-earth supporters and miracle cure advocates have already seen half of their video views deleted. In the future, YouTube will recommend videos from more authoritative sources, like top news channels in its “next watch” panel.
YouTube also plans to restrict channels from making money out of content and which are found to promote hate speech policies,” making channels unable to run ads or use Super Chat, which lets channel subscribers pay creators directly for extra chat features after the paid commenting system was found to be used by creators of hate speech videos to generate profit.
YouTube and its parent Google company, Alphabet, are subjected to growing political pressure, mostly from the EU to force exploiting users that generate violating material off the platform.
As part of the blanket scrapping of accounts, one of the most prominent investigators into anti-Semitic groups had his YouTube account mistakenly deleted because it contained Holocaust denial material.
David Collier tweeted that YouTube had barred his videos”probably because, as a fighter against anti-Semitism, I share examples of it.” His account was restored hours later, as his tweet went viral.