YouTube has banned videos promoting Nazi ideology from its service.
It has decided it will no longer host videos that deny the Holocaust and the deaths of millions of Jews during World War II, or the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in 2012 in which 20 children and six teachers were killed.
The Google-owned video sharing platform said the move follows its undertaking of “a tougher stance” in 2017 towards supremacist and terrorist content.
Sky News has uncovered examples of the way YouTube has been used to spread terror content following attacks.
A hate preacher who was accused of orchestrating the deadly Easter suicide bombings in Sri Lanka had numerous sermons featured on the platform, days after those same sermons had inspired the murders.
Following the New Zealand mosque shootings videos were also widely uploaded to YouTube celebrating the killings, including one which recreates the attack in the children’s game Minecraft.
However in 2017 the platform was criticised for deleting video evidence relating to potential war crimes in Syria as part of its work to remove terrorist content and propaganda from the platform.
Thousands of videos have been uploaded to YouTube since 2011 giving “rare insight and rare documentation to what is unfolding in Syria”, said Elliot Higgins, founder of the investigative network Bellingcat, who collated these videos.
YouTube said it recognised “some of this content has value to researchers and NGOs looking to understand hate in order to combat it, and we are exploring options to make it available to them in the future”.
It said the “tougher stance” it adopted in 2017 led to videos with supremacist content being viewed 80% less than before as it limited the ways those videos were recommended, shared and commented on.
“Today, we’re taking another step in our hate speech policy by specifically prohibiting videos alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or exclusion,” the company said.
Protected qualities specific by YouTube include: Age, gender, race, caste, religion, sexual orientation and veteran status.
“Context matters, so some videos could remain up because they discuss topics like pending legislation, aim to condemn or expose hate, or provide analysis of current events,” said YouTube.
“We will begin enforcing this updated policy today; however, it will take time for our systems to fully ramp up and we’ll be gradually expanding coverage over the next several months.”
Source: SKY NEWS