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YouTube Slammed For Hosting Controversial Conspiracy Theorist Alex Jones

YouTube along with its community guidelines that do not actually prohibit banned users from appearing on other channels are being roasted on the Internet

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YouTube
YouTube. Pixabay

Google-owned video sharing platform YouTube is being heavily criticised for hosting controversial conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who is banned from several major social networking platforms for his offensive posts, on a two-hour long podcast episode accessible to its 1.8 billion global users.

Eight months after being banned from YouTube itself, Jones returned to the platform for Internet-famed Logan Paul’s podcast called “Impaulsive”, where he discussed conspiracy theories and questionable information on sensitive subjects like autism, The Verge reported on Thursday.

Now the platform is being accused of being unwise for giving a notorious theorist space in a show which is accessable by impressionable minors as well.

“Logan Paul, a YouTube meathead who recently mocked suicide victims and has 18 million teenage subscribers, is hosting far right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on his podcast today. This is how radicalisation happens online,” free speech activitist, Nathan Bernard wrote on Twitter.

While Paul has nearly 19 million subscribers of himself, his podcast “Impaulsive” is subscribed by 1.4 million people.

Since YouTube projects to be working hard on combatting the spread of such content on its platform, Jones’ appearance on a famous show has put the video sharing platform in a problematic spot.

YouTube, Google, google services
The YouTube Music app is displayed on a mobile phone in Los Angeles. VOA

The episode already managed to gather 330,873 views and 5,599 comments on the platform, however the episode does not come with any context-providing information boxes about the show.

“YouTube may have taken action restricting this episode of Paul’s podcast. The episode isn’t running with any ads, the video also doesn’t appear on YouTube’s front page, nor does it appear on its trending section, which means YouTube may have limited its promotional reach,” the report said.

By last October, tech majors including Google-owned YouTube, Apple, Facebook, Spotify and Twitter either removed or restricted Jones’ activities on their platforms for promoting hate speech and abusive comments on transgenders, Muslims, immigrants and other sensitive subjects.

Also Read- WHO Might Declare Congo’s Ebola Outbreak an International Health Emergency

YouTube along with its community guidelines that do not actually prohibit banned users from appearing on other channels are being roasted on the Internet.

This was the second time in a month that Jones was allowed to appear on a popular YouTube personality’s channel, following a four-hour appearance on Joe Rogan’s podcast in February. (IANS)

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YouTube Shuts Down The Comment Section on Its Livestream on Expressing Of Anti-Semitic Views

"Overaggressive enforcement can also inadvertently silence voices that are using the platform to make themselves heard on these important issues," Walden said.

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YouTube
Echoing the remark, Google's Walden said that removing hate speech can be complex because content may be offensive but not violate YouTube's policies against hate speech or incite violence.  Pixabay

Google-owned YouTube shut down the comment section on its livestream of a congressional hearing on white nationalism after it got filled with hateful comments.

Many of the comments on the livestream expressed anti-Semitic views or decried multicultural societies while others expressed white pride, the CNET reported on Tuesday.

Facebook’s public policy director Neil Potts and Alexandria Walden, counsel for free expression and human rights at Google, had on Tuesday appeared before the US House Judiciary Committee to discuss the role of the platforms when white nationalism is on the rise.

Both companies have been under mounting pressure to combat hate speech following a string of hate-ridden events. They have also been accused of fuelling white supremacy.

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Potts told the committee that it is not “simple” for the world’s largest social network, with over two billion users worldwide, to decide which posts it should keep and which it should pull down, because of the huge amount of information that flows through the site. Pixabay

The flood of toxic comments on the livestream during the congressional hearing demonstrated the difficulty tech companies, which often rely on users to flag inappropriate comments, face while monitoring activity on their platforms.

“Hate speech has no place on YouTube. We’ve invested heavily in teams and technology dedicated to removing hateful comments/videos,” the Google-owned video service tweeted.

“Due to the presence of hateful comments, we disabled comments on the livestream of today’s House Judiciary Committee hearing.”

Potts told the committee that it is not “simple” for the world’s largest social network, with over two billion users worldwide, to decide which posts it should keep and which it should pull down, because of the huge amount of information that flows through the site.

Echoing the remark, Google’s Walden said that removing hate speech can be complex because content may be offensive but not violate YouTube’s policies against hate speech or incite violence.

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Many of the comments on the livestream expressed anti-Semitic views or decried multicultural societies while others expressed white pride, the CNET reported on Tuesday.
Pixabay

It is also contentious because there are disagreements on where to draw the line between political speech and hate speech, the report noted.

Also Read: For Accuracy Facebook Will Use AI To Map World Population

“Overaggressive enforcement can also inadvertently silence voices that are using the platform to make themselves heard on these important issues,” Walden said.

When asked if their sites were neutral platforms or editorial publications, Potts said Facebook is a tech company, while Walden said Google’s YouTube is a “free and open platform” for users to upload their own content, the report noted. (IANS)