Saturday, August 07, 2021

Why YouTube has doubled down on "citizen journalism" regarding coronavirus and elections


Baby Trump, from a 2019-7 "sh show"

On Aug. 3, Ian Corzine posted a video “Why YouTube Canceled News”.

He is referring specifically to YouTube’s one week suspension of a major “conservative” news channel in Australia, Sky News for mentioning a particularly controversial drug in connection with proposed coronavirus treatment.  

I’ll provide the link to YouTube’s rules on Covid19content.  I supposed they would apply to Blogger, too.

They are quite extensive.  YouTube has a problem in knowing that many visitors are intellectually naïve and not very capable of separating obviously false or questionable claims and rumors from reasonably credible facts.   They can reasonably fear that people will be wrongfully persuaded to avoid vaccinations, possibly exposing the US and many other countries to the additional risk of the evolution of vaccine resistant variants, making us start all over.  So this is a very big deal, ethically. 

Likewise YouTube has enforced rules on claims of the 2020 election having been “stolen”, and we saw on January 6, 2021 the danger that wide belief in these (putatively mostly false) claims can pose. I'm also afraid that some social media censorship by YouTube, Facebook/Instagram and Twitter seem a lot like nausea reflexes (given the influence of the Left on corporate culture today) to anything connected to former president Donald Trump. 

Some of the rules on Covid have to do with treatment misinformation, and there is an article in Nature about the withdrawal of a preprint report on coronavirus in India that seems applicable to YouTube’s rules.

In a more general way, YouTube has become uncomfortable with the idea that non-professionals play journalist online about issues rather than use it in a more conventional way to promote or sell lifestyle produces and services or values (or show personal willingness to participate in conventional activism based on group solidarity, rather than acting and speaking on their own apart from established movements and non-profits).

We saw that concerned with the TOS changes in late 2019 (ironically just before the pandemic) with the mention of a “commercial viability” concept.

Fox5News in DC today reported on a product that detects coronavirus in home or office air circulation, under development in Maryland, apparently not available yet.  It could be a game changer if it works, but I have no further details now.

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