YouTube claimed this week that it will promote lesser videos having conspiracy theories and misinformation, a possibly noteworthy action to lowering the potential of service to drive users toward extremist content. In a test restricted to the U.S., the service claimed that it will stop suggesting what it dubs “borderline content.” These are videos that come close to infringing its society guidelines but stop just short.
While YouTube claimed that the modification will impact less than 1% of videos that are accessible on YouTube, the sheer volume of material accessible on the service recommends that the impact can be significant.
“We will start lowering suggestions of borderline content and content that can mislead consumers in harmful manners—such as videos touting a fake miracle cure for a serious diseases, stating the earth is flat, or making blatantly fake claims about historic occasions such as 9/11,” the firm claimed to the media in an interview.
The decision comes in the middle of sustained criticism that YouTube has unsuspectingly supported extremist videos for years. In a broadly read op-ed 2018, industry researchers dubbed YouTube “as the great radicalizer.”
On a related note, Gavin McInnes, Proud Boys founder and Alt-right commentator, earlier was prohibited on YouTube for various 3rd-party claims of copyright infringement, as per the firm. During the ban, McInnes, who also co-established Vice Media in 1994 before to his participation with various nationalist causes, had more than 200,000 followers.
It is not obvious as to which videos on his channel resulted in the ban, but YouTube verified that the channel had surpassed the threshold for patent strikes, resulting in a “repeat offender” prohibition. In November 2018, the FBI flagged the Proud Boys as an extremist group. But later FBI clarified that the flag was the outcome of a mistake.