The United States Senate’s Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs saw two videos vaporized in Stalinist fashion because Youtube’s censor didn’t see them as fit for public consumption.
The Wall Street Journal reported on the disturbing, Chinese-level act of censorship, which is raising alarms about where this is all heading:
Google’s YouTube has ratcheted up censorship to a new level by removing two videos from a U.S. Senate committee. They were from a Dec. 8 Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs hearing on early treatment of Covid-19. One was a 30-minute summary; the other was the opening statement of critical-care specialist Pierre Kory.
It is interesting that one of the committee hearings relates directly to cheap drugs that might be used to treat COVID-19.
“At the December hearing, he presented evidence regarding the use of ivermectin, a cheap and widely available drug that treats tropical diseases caused by parasites, for prevention and early treatment of Covid-19,’ the Journal reported. “He described a just-published study from Argentina in which about 800 health-care workers received ivermectin and 400 didn’t. Not one of the 800 contracted Covid-19; 58% of the 400 did.”
Big Tech now seems fully committed to preventing transparency on public policy issues, even to the extent that it would ban videos from the U.S. Senate. That level of brazenness suggests that the corporations feel like they are untouchable. And beyond some lip service to holding these companies responsible, the U.S. government has thus far done nothing to challenge that assessment.
The Google-owned video sharing platform YouTube has demonetized numerous independent media accounts, a jarring escalation in the steadily intensifying campaign against alternative news outlets online.
Progressive commentators Graham Elwood, The Progressive Soapbox, The Convo Couch, Franc Analysis, Hannah Reloaded and Cyberdemon531 have all received notifications from YouTube that their videos are no longer permitted to earn money through the platform’s various monetization features, as has Ford Fischer, a respected freelancer who films US political demonstrations. No explanation has been offered for this decision beyond the vague claim that “your channel is not in line with our YouTube Partner Program policies” due to “harmful content”.
Like all large online platforms, YouTube’s appeals process is notoriously opaque and unaccountable. These accounts could remain demonetized for months, or forever, without any clear explanation at all. Ford Fischer, who has been in this situation before, said on Twitter that his account was left demonetized for seven months before YouTube reversed its decision.
An academic critical media literacy conference warning of the dangers of media censorship has, ironically, been censored by YouTube. The Critical Media Literacy Conference of the Americas 2020 took place without incident online over two days in October and featured a number of esteemed speakers and panels discussing issues concerning modern media studies.
Weeks later, however, the entire video record of the conference — estimated at around 24 hours of material — disappeared from YouTube. Organizer Nolan Higdon of California State University East Bay, began receiving worried messages from other academics, some of which were shared with MintPress, who had been using the material in their classrooms, noting that it had all mysteriously disappeared.
“At first I thought it was a joke,” said Mickey Huff of Diablo Valley College, California. “My initial reaction was ‘that’s absurd;’ there must have been a mistake or an accident or it must have got swept under somehow. There is no violation, there was no reasoning, there was no warning, there was not an explanation, there was no nothing. The entire channel was just gone,” he told MintPress. Huff is also the director of Project Censored, an organization that sponsored the event.
Many U.S. government agencies and military branches have public YouTube pages. That is no secret. However, within these channels, lies a hidden treasure trove of PRIVATE/UNLISTED videos NOT accessible by the general public.
Through the Freedom of Information Act, The Black Vault along with another researcher has tackled trying to get access to these videos listings. That researcher has donated the requests they did, along with the documents, to the archive below. However, they asked for their identifying information to be redacted.
On Wednesday, YouTube announced that it will begin removing any content alleging widespread voter fraud influenced the outcome of the 2020 US presidential election.
In the immediate aftermath of the November 3rd election, YouTube came under fire for allowing channels to publish videos making false claims about election results. In one instance, One America News Network, a verified YouTube channel, published a video declaring that “Trump won” the election. At the time, YouTube defended its decision to let the video stand, saying in a statement, “Like other companies, we’re allowing these videos because discussion of election results & the process of counting votes is allowed on YouTube.”
The company went on to say that content from “authoritative news organizations” were “the most popular videos about the election.”
The welding of American politics with social media may be the defining moment of a sea change that is taking place at the very top echelons of power in the United States and the world. In the run-up to the 2020 U.S. elections, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube all revealed their inescapable ties to the establishment when they launched an information warfare campaign against their own users and content creators in a bid to shape perceptions and control national discourse on the government’s behalf.
As the most contentious election in living memory drags on days after the vote, itself, the massive purge of profiles and content deemed politically dangerous carried out by the most popular social media platforms just over two weeks before Election Day, went practically unnoticed by everyone other than those who were actually de-platformed and their followers.
In mid-October, Google-owned YouTube and other social media giants purged the accounts of the most popular QAnon channels, spurring a class-action lawsuit against the video streaming platform filed in the Northern District of California later that month.
YouTube said Thursday that it would no longer allow content that targets individuals and groups with conspiracy theories, specifically QAnon and its antecedent, “pizzagate.”
“Today, we are taking another step in our efforts to curb hate and harassment by removing more conspiracy theory content used to justify real-world violence,” the company announced on its blog.
The new rules, an expansion of YouTube’s existing hate and harassment policies, will prohibit content that “threatens or harrasses someone by suggesting they are complicit in one of these harmful conspiracies, such as QAnon or Pizzagate,” the post read.
YouTube said it would be enforcing the updated policy immediately and plans to “ramp up in the weeks to come.”
YouTube’s move to rid the platform of QAnon content follows similar recent changes by other social media platforms. In July, Twitter removed QAnon accounts and restricted QAnon content. Last week, Facebook said it would remove groups, pages and Instagram accounts that identified with QAnon.
Ever heard of destroying something in order to save it? Check out the latest genius move in the name of virtue-signaling from YouTube.
The world’s largest video platform, with more than 2 billion users a month, will ban videos containing information that was obtained through hacking and could meddle with elections or censuses. That would include material like hacked campaign emails with details about a candidate. The update follows the announcement of a similar rule that Google, which owns YouTube, unveiled earlier this month banning ads that contain hacked information. Google will start enforcing that policy Sept. 1.
Which is preposterous. If some kind of news from some kind of hack is hot, all that matters is whether it’s true or not, not whether it changes public perceptions. YouTube is focused on those ‘perceptions’ though and has changed its policy to make sure there is no change of perceptions. Status quo, anyone? They’re very fond of the status quo. It’s a stupid idea because we all know what this is about – the 2016 hacked John Podesta emails and all the interesting news about what Democrats say to each other away from the cameras and public relations spin operations. It was mostly inside baseball, and didn’t affect the election, but the Democrats, bitter about Hillary Clinton’s election loss, and still not admitting the problem was their bad candidate who refused to go to Wisconsin, continue to say it did.
This YouTube move accommodates their looney logic, which is a partisan political statement right there.