Coronavirus: YouTube bans ‘medically unsubstantiated’ content
YouTube has banned any coronavirus-related content that directly contradicts the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO).
Google’s proprietary service says it will remove anything it deems “medical unfounded”.
CEO Susan Wojcicki said the media giant wanted to eradicate “disinformation on the platform”.
The move follows YouTube which bans conspiracy theories that falsely connect Covid-19 networks to 5G networks.
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Ms. Wojcicki made the comments Wednesday during her first interview since the beginning of the global coronavirus blockade.
“So people say,” Take vitamin C, take turmeric, we’ll cure you, “these are examples of things that would be a violation of our policy,” he told CNN.
“Anything that goes against the recommendations of the World Health Organization would be a violation of our policy.”
Ms. Wojcicki added that YouTube has seen a 75% increase in demand for news from “authoritative” sources.
Last week, Facebook announced that users who had read, watched or shared false information about Covid-19 would receive a pop-up notice inviting them to visit the WHO website.
The messaging service owned by Facebook WhatsApp, meanwhile, has prevented users from forwarding messages already shared more than four times by the wider community to more than one chat at a time.
The culture secretary praised the response of social media and tech companies to ban misinformation about the coronavirus.
“I pay tribute to the work done,” Oliver Dowden told Wednesday’s digital, cultural, media and sports selection committee.
But he urged them to remove inaccurate information more quickly during “overtime” periods such as evenings and weekends.
It looks like some of the UK’s biggest news publishers, including Daily Telegraph and The Guardian, have criticized Google for not being transparent about its approach to advertising filtering along with coronavirus-related content, according to the Financial Times.
Brands use blacklist filters to prevent their ads from showing alongside stories, including keywords such as “coronavirus” and “pandemic”.
These filters are already widely used, to prevent car manufacturers’ ads from showing alongside road accident stories, for example.
But now some media are frustrated content that they consider “harmless”, like edifying stories of human interest, who are also prevented from managing these advertisements.
Keyword blocking is estimated to cost the UK newspaper industry $ 50 million (£ 40 million) over the next year.
And digital minister John Whittingdale discussed the matter with publishers and advertising agencies earlier this month.
Google has told the Financial Times that it is “in constant discussion of how it can help the industry in this difficult time.”