Critics of YouTube's business and tactics, specifically those coming from the conservative portion of the US politics and society, repeatedly cry foul declaring this Google-owned, super influential platform as one that is habitually using its power to sway users effectively towards its own vast preference as a global video giant.
But could YouTube at the same time be deliberately putting in many roadblocks, some more subtle than others all the way to the ultimate goal of suppressing legitimate, conservative online voices?
The evidence seems to point that way.
This question has not merely been an ongoing accusation made by observers and active participants who theorize bad intent on the part of Big Tech but in fact, this has also been a question put forward by some Google insiders, in their public testimonies that support similar claims all boiling down to accusing YouTube of being motivated by bias, fueled by some very real real world politics and allegiances.
And that activity, if true, would be something very disappointing to normal users not only in the US, but around the world where the myth of an objective, knowledge-based, data-driven, scientific search result might still be strong with Google and its various services.
That said the case of comedian and political commentator Steven Crowder might, overall, provide one of the most obvious examples clearly proving the accusation of YouTube employing a negative, multi-pronged approach to what the social media giant sees as the problem namely, suppressing online opinions it disagrees with but doing it on ideological and political grounds.
Granted in an ideal world and a true democracy, this is not even something that should emerge as a problem after all, a democracy's genuine freedom of speech and a capitalist system's genuine transactional nature should be enough to satisfy both parties in any YouTube/Creator relationship.
Nevertheless, something is clearly amiss and here we are, just over a year ahead of the next US presidential election, looking at how Google/YouTube are choosing to position themselves within their own truth.
Right now, Steven Crowder's YouTube channel is emerging as the poster child for all the different ways YouTube might go after creators it eventually seems to want to squeeze out of the platform while not exactly deciding to outright remove them.
If a creator clearly violated YouTube's terms of service and/or guidelines, they would be an easy to ban. But if, like in Crowder's case, the platform had no objective reason to get rid of them the platform seems to just continues to look for other ways to downgrade their content.
YouTube's actions, and the aftermath
Earlier in the year, YouTube demonetized Crowder's channel after the comedian's brand of humor happened to mash badly with that of a rival content creator, Carlos Maza. Long story short: YouTube at the time erred on the side of censorship and demonetized Crowder's channel without outright banning him.
But now, YouTube seems to be fighting its ideological enemies far more subtly by making them dissipate all the way to disappearing in that all-important segment the search results.
In a new video this week, Crowder tells his followers about YouTube's latest censorship tactic and what it means for the channel, as well as for the rest of the conservative movement.
YouTube's policy, Crowder explains, means that while subscribed audience members might be as present as ever, and providing as many clicks on videos as before and often more than before conservative channels such as his are finding it super difficult to grow their audiences right now.
This sounds illogical: a channel like Crowder's, that has managed to grow views on its videos nearing a million views per clip easily squeezing out progressive favorites like The Young Turks must also surely be able to grow its own subscriber base on YouTube? Apparently, not so.
Crowder says in the video that this is indeed not the case and expressing doubt that this highly unlikely turn of events might have happened as anything organic on the internet. Overall Crowder's recommendations from YouTube are down.
In fact he found out that searches on YouTube for Steven Crowder consistently returned results for pretty much anything such as mentions and references in other creators' videos but not results to his actual channel. The same was true for other conservative commentators and organizations.
In the wake of this, some progress has been made, judging by Crowder's recent tweet and others, like political commentator Mark Dice who tweeted to say that YouTube has quietly fixed it. FINALLY. Crowder highlighted how the search results looked before and after his lawyer contacted YouTube about the issue.
Dice's original complaint had to do with YouTube burying results about his own channel at the bottom of any search of his own name something that appeared to be a common enough tactic on the part of YouTube.
The internet needs your voice more than ever.
Read more from the original source:
- Internet Censorship During COVID-19 Is Threat To Cryptocurrencies And Liberty - Forbes - April 2nd, 2020
- Social media censorship in the time of coronavirus - Telecoms.com - April 2nd, 2020
- The Coronavirus Has Started a Censorship Pandemic in Turkey, Hungary, Thailand, and Around the World - Foreign Policy - April 2nd, 2020
- Landmarks in law: the controversial 80s play that defied gay censorship - The Guardian - April 2nd, 2020
- Turkey among several countries censoring their coronavirus critics - Ahval - April 2nd, 2020
- Bitcoin Core shifts to dark web to resist censorship - Decrypt - April 2nd, 2020
- It's a bad idea for journalists to censor Trump instead, they can help the public identify what's true or false - The Conversation US - April 2nd, 2020
- The mounting human cost of Chinas coronavirus censorship - Reclaim The Net - April 2nd, 2020
- Society's Dependence on the Internet: 5 Cyber Issues the Coronavirus Lays Bare - Nextgov - April 2nd, 2020
- Turkmenistan bans the word Coronavirus, wearing of masks, in a major censorship move - The Statesman - April 2nd, 2020
- Indias government wants to censor the media to fight Covid-19 but transparency is a better weapon - Scroll.in - April 2nd, 2020
- YouTube continues to ban crypto content; None knows the reason - iNVEZZ - April 2nd, 2020
- How Authoritarians Are Exploiting the Covid-19 Crisis to Grab Power - The New York Review of Books - April 2nd, 2020
- Corona Cover-Up? Videos The Chinese Government Would Rather You Don't See Surface on The Internet - Talent Recap - April 2nd, 2020
- Under the pretext of combating coronavirus States trying to crush the opposition and to tighten censorship - The KXAN 36 News - April 2nd, 2020
- Reporters Without Borders: If the Chinese press were free, the coronavirus might not be a pandemic - Hong Kong Free Press - April 2nd, 2020
- China's Media Censorship Could Cost Thousands of Lives: Journalism Watchdog - Newsweek - April 1st, 2020
- It's a bad idea for journalists to censor Trump instead, they can help the public identify what's true or false - goskagit.com - April 1st, 2020
- Apple Helps China Censor Citizens By Pulling The Plug On A Keyboard App That Encrypted Text Messages - Techdirt - April 1st, 2020
- Bored with the First Amendment | Scales on Censorship - School Library Journal - April 1st, 2020
- John Wick Producer Ordered to Pay Huayi Bros. Over Axed China Release - Variety - April 1st, 2020
- Some mobile phone apps may contain hidden behaviors that users never see - The Ohio State University News - April 1st, 2020
- Bypassing the China firewall needs & ways to do it - KnowTechie - April 1st, 2020
- Society's dependence on the internet: 5 cyber issues the coronavirus lays bare - The Conversation US - April 1st, 2020
- Reporters Without Borders to track coronavirus disinformation - The Shift News - April 1st, 2020
- virtual minecraft library combats government censorship by housing banned journalism - Designboom - March 16th, 2020
- Lessons From China on the Coronavirus and the Dangers of App Consolidation - Slate - March 16th, 2020
- 'Love in time of' coronavirus: Tinder being used to circumnavigate possible Chinese censorship of outbreak - Washington Examiner - March 16th, 2020
- Coronavirus: The new and ingenious ways Chinese citizens are evading censorship to learn about the outbreak - Hong Kong Free Press - March 16th, 2020
- Censorship and Propaganda in the Time of the Coronavirus - Qrius - March 16th, 2020
- Should OTT content in India have a censor board to strap creative freedom just like films? - PINKVILLA - March 16th, 2020
- The big coronavirus cover-up: Fighting truth and coronavirus, the China way - ThePrint - March 16th, 2020
- The first real liberty of the press in Malta 1839 (Part 1) - Times of Malta - March 16th, 2020
- How Editors From Mexico, India, and the UAE Are Covering the Coronavirus - Slate - March 16th, 2020
- From the Archives: Commentator Suspends Publication After Threat of Censorship - The Commentator - March 1st, 2020
- Apple may be forced to disclose censorship requests from China - The Guardian - March 1st, 2020
- Students Demand Censorship of 'Coronavirus' Theme Party - Reason - March 1st, 2020
- Pompeo accuses China and Iran of censoring information about coronavirus outbreaks - ABC News - March 1st, 2020
- Conservatives censoring themselves in the age of censorship? InfoWars kicked out of CPAC, triggering conference row - RT - March 1st, 2020
- Why we must win the fight for free speech - Spiked - March 1st, 2020
- Critics Say China Has Suppressed And Censored Information In Coronavirus Outbreak - NPR - February 14th, 2020
- Transgender users have accused TikTok of censorship - here's why - Derry Journal - February 14th, 2020
- Rand Paul Blasts YouTube over Censorship of Speech on Senate Floor - Breitbart - February 14th, 2020
- Newspapers fear new social media rules will lead to wider censorship - The Guardian - February 14th, 2020
- Anti-BDS laws are meant to censor & control speech, journalist Abby Martin tells RT after suing Georgia govt over cancelled talk - RT - February 14th, 2020
- Be more tolerant, Anwar tells Malaysians over art censorship - Malay Mail - February 14th, 2020
- China's censors tried to control the narrative on a hero doctor's death. It backfired terribly - CNN - February 12th, 2020
- China Ramps Up Censorship On Coronavirus As Critics Risk Criminal Charges - Forbes - February 12th, 2020
- Heres How China Is Silencing Coronavirus Critics in the U.S. - VICE - February 12th, 2020
- Here are the 9 titles Netflix purged due to government censorship - The Next Web - February 12th, 2020
- Parler: Twitter Suspending James OKeefe Is Political Censorship and Election Interference - Breitbart - February 12th, 2020
- Censorship, lies and death: China's government under fire - TheArticle - February 12th, 2020
- A glimmer of hope: Mallika Sarabhai on the cancelled NID event, CAA protests, censorship and more - Scroll.in - February 12th, 2020
- Penny Thoughts: Editing and Censorship | - West Alabama Watchman - January 30th, 2020
- The many ways to censor cutting-edge art in Russia - The Economist - January 30th, 2020
- How does a government censor the Internet? A rare peek from Jammu and Kashmir - Security Boulevard - January 30th, 2020
- Pompeo And Trump: Censure Of The Press As A Form Of Retaliation - Forbes - January 30th, 2020
- Circus of censorship - The News on Sunday - January 30th, 2020
- Study: North Korea, China, and Russia top internet censorship charts - The Next Web - January 22nd, 2020
- Cries of censorship in Sudan as media outlets linked to old regime closed - Middle East Eye - January 22nd, 2020
- Aichi Triennale Exhibition Will Be Restaged in Taiwan Following Censorship Controversy - Artforum - January 22nd, 2020
- Censorship On and By Social Media Platforms - Legal Reader - January 22nd, 2020
- Internet Censorship In Africa Is A Trend In Africa - What To Expect In 2020 - WeeTracker Media - January 22nd, 2020
- The spy who fell off my family tree and nearly got away - The Jewish News of Northern California - January 22nd, 2020
- Some people in China help the party police the internet - The Economist - January 22nd, 2020
- Nepal: Information Technology Bill threatens freedom of expression - Amnesty International - January 22nd, 2020
- Web needs an element of censorship as some of it is bordering on pornography: Niki Walia - IWMBuzz - January 22nd, 2020
- Facebook and Google Balance Booming Business with Censorship Pressure in Vietnam - The Information - December 13th, 2019
- Orban targets theaters, prompting protest against censorship - The Boston Globe - December 13th, 2019
- Self-censorship is the enemy of creativity - Spiked - December 13th, 2019
- Ben Shapiro, conservatives blast YouTube policy on harassment: 'Insanely vague' - Fox News - December 13th, 2019
- Anti-war artworks removed in censorship row - The Age - December 13th, 2019
- Women Are Pretending To Be Men On Instagram To Avoid Sexist Censorship - HuffPost - November 24th, 2019
- When a comedian is pro-censorship, I start finding them funny - The Spectator USA - November 24th, 2019
- Cancelation of 'The Foreigner' at WC leads to claims of censorship - The Star Democrat - November 24th, 2019
- Democrats are not "censoring" Donald Trump his increasingly desperate staff is doing that - Salon - November 24th, 2019
- The right to know: How does censorship affect academics? - Big Think - November 19th, 2019
- Even with the best intentions, censoring books is dangerous - The Aggie - November 19th, 2019
- Will the U.S. Follow East Germany on Self-Censorship? - National Review - November 19th, 2019
- Tougher Than Leather: The Tom of Finland Foundation's Fight Against Censorship Continues Into the Social Media Age - L.A. Weekly - November 19th, 2019