SAN FRANCISCO: YouTube bans far right-wing US news channel for a week. One America News Network, one of the preferred outlets of US President Donald Trump, was barred by YouTube from uploading new videos for a week for wrongly stating that Covid-19 has a cure, the social media network said Tuesday.
Speaker Ivy Choi said the famous Google-owned website also temporarily stopped OAN from making money from content already online.
“We removed a video from OAN after careful review and issued a strike on the channel for violating our misinformation policy on Covid-19, which prohibits content claiming that there is a guaranteed cure,” Choi said in a statement.
This is the first time that OAN, a small, far-right and intensely partisan outlet that has refused to accept Joe Biden’s victory in the Nov 3 presidential election, has clamped down on YouTube and has spread lies about electoral fraud.
OAN has two more strikes before being booted off the social media site, according to YouTube rules.
OAN would also have to show that if it wishes to be able to monetise the videos again. It has addressed the issues to YouTube’s satisfaction.
“We’ve worked to prevent the spread of harmful misinformation associated with Covid-19 on YouTube since early in this pandemic,” Choi said.
YouTube has pulled 200,000 harmful or deceptive videos about the topic since February, the company said.
YouTube, which has seen a rise in audience as individuals stay at home due to the pandemic, has been promoting authoritative sources of information, of which OAN is not one.
Tens of thousands of Trump supporters are moving to smaller far-right outlets. For example, OAN and Newsmax. They are unhappy with the perceived “censorship” of conservatives on prominent social media platforms and even dissatisfied with Fox News.
The viewership was promoted by Trump. “Try @OANN to watch. Good indeed! “On Nov 16, he tweeted.
On Tuesday, multiple Democratic senators led by Bob Menendez wrote to YouTube requesting them to delete videos spreading lies about elections.
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