As part of efforts to reduce hate speech and threats on its platform, YouTube has announced that it will be introducing stricter harassment policies. This will apply to all videos going forwards, for both private individuals and well-known content creators.
Online harassment, threats, and hate speech are a key concern, especially for children and young people. Many experts believe that this issue a major contributor in the mental health crisis, and that platforms need to do more to prevent it.
YouTube says it hopes that taking a tougher stance in online harassment will create a safer and more enjoyable environment for users to share their ideas. To do this, any explicit threats, even if they are “implied” or “veiled”, will be removed. This also applies to channels and those who have consistent patterns of harassing behaviour.
The online streaming giant, which is owned by Google, says that it will be removing any video that insults someone based on gender, sexual orientation, or race. In addition, creators will now have the ability to review potentially harmful comments on videos before they are posted.
On YouTube channels, this feature has already been introduced for comments, and has resulted in a 75% decrease in the number of users flagging up comments. This will be extended to all users and channels by the end of the year.
YouTube said in a blog post.“Channels that repeatedly brush up against our harassment policy will be suspended from the YouTube Partner Program (YPP), eliminating their ability to make money on YouTube.”.
“We may also remove content from channels if they repeatedly harass someone. If this behavior continues, we’ll take more severe action including issuing strikes or terminating a channel altogether.”
“Beyond comments that we remove, we also empower creators to further shape the conversation on their channels and have a variety of tools that help. When we’re not sure a comment violates our policies, but it seems potentially inappropriate, we give creators the option to review it before it’s posted on their channel.”