YouTube demonetises anti-vaccination videos

Advertisers flee YouTube after video comments get even more disgusting

"We have strict policies that govern what videos we allow ads to appear on, and videos that promote anti-vaccination content are a violation of those policies", YouTube said through a spokesperson. But it remains to be seen if YouTube can fully stop the problem.

In a separate report on anti-vaxxer content on the platform published earlier this week, BuzzFeed News reported that YouTube was promoting these videos in its suggested content column, even on informational videos about immunization. Watson's 20-minute video-now viewed more than 2 million times-demonstrates how commenters would identify specific time stamps to find sexually suggestive material and, if users clicked on one of the videos, YouTube's algorithms recommended similar ones.

The Google-owned service has also disabled the comments on tens of millions of videos featuring minors and reported the discovered illegal comments to law enforcement, a YouTube spokesperson told PCMag.

YouTube derives most of its revenue from advertising, and it has been one of Google's fastest-growing units as consumers spend an increasing amount of time watching videos online.

"If this is our new reality we're going to need the ability to restrict comments from accounts under 1-4 weeks old", declared YouTube content creator Philip DeFranco.

The furor over the child videos is a fresh blow to YouTube's reputation for policing sensitive content.

This week, major companies, including McDonald's, Nestlé, and Epic Games pulled advertisements from YouTube after it was revealed their adverts were being placed on videos which had become hives for pedophiles. "There's more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly".

For example, some child predators in the comment sections will timestamp certain sections of the YouTube video that, specifically, sexualize the child in disgusting ways.

Last April, advertisers also fled when ads for more than 300 companies including Amazon, Netflix, and Adidas ran alongside videos pushing extremist ideologies.

This cycle of back-and-forth between advertisers and YouTube is likely to keep repeating on open platforms because of the volume of uploaded content on the platform. "We also need to fight to have the developers of social media platforms held responsible when they do not assure that age restriction are followed and when they do not remove inappropriate and/or unsafe material when reported".

YouTube didn't specify which anti-vax channels - or how many - were subject to the demonetization action.

"So now trolls can just post vulgar comments and take away the income from creators they do not like?" asked YouTube content creator Luke Rudkowski.

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