YouTube issued a threat in a blog post to content creators who use the platform on December 9, 2020, to stop communication about election irregularities, or their videos with unapproved content would be deleted .
Content creators who post videos on the Social Media behemoth YouTube are deciding their next steps after YouTube posted on the “Official YouTube Blog” that they would “begin enforcing this policy” by removing content that violates YouTube policy.
Not only do more than of 70% of Americans believe there was fraud in this recent election – which there was – but over 30% of voters believe fraud impacted the results of the election.
Is YouTube Editing Content, or Enforcing Policy?
“Since September, we’ve terminated over 8000 channels and thousands of harmful and misleading elections-related videos for violating our existing policies.” the YouTube post said. The post continued, “Our Community Guidelines prohibit spam, scams, or other manipulated media, coordinated influence operations, and any content that seeks to incite violence.”
YouTube asserts that their decision is because of the “safe harbor deadline for the U.S. Presidential election” having passed, and therefore no one can talk about election irregularities, fraud, or illegal votes on their platform because that “misleads people.” The post finished with “we will start removing any piece of content uploaded today (or anytime after) that misleads people by alleging that widespread fraud or errors changed the outcome of the 2020 U.S. Presidential election, in line with our approach towards historical U.S. Presidential elections.”
YouTube allowed exceptions stating that “news coverage and commentary on these issues can remain on our site if there’s sufficient education, documentary, scientific or artistic context.”
Content Creators and Users Speak Out
Users are speaking out. True the Vote Founder and President Catherine Engelbrecht said, “YouTube’s recent policy announcement regarding their policing of content on the presidential election is an affront to Americans’ right to free speech.” She continued, “Not only do more than of 70% of Americans believe there was fraud in this recent election – which there was – but over 30% of voters believe fraud impacted the results of the election.” Engelbrecht finished her statements by asking people to follow True the Vote on “newer platforms like Parler and Rumble. We will share our message far and wide over all platforms, and we will challenge and persevere against those who try to silence us .”
Twitter users speak out too. Barbara said, “Hiding facts from the public doesn’t change anything! People are able to see it other places!”
Hiding facts from the public doesn’t change anything! People are able to see it other places!
— Barbara (@sassybarbara12) December 9, 2020
Bruce commented, “Censorship is legal when done by a private company but it’s still censorship. It’s only illegal when done by gov’t but it’s still censorship.”
Censorship is legal when done by a private company but it’s still censorship. It’s only illegal when done by gov’t but it’s still censorship 🤡
— Bruce Brooks (@brooks_bruce) December 10, 2020
Talkshow host, author of the Bongino Report, and vlogger Dan Bongino states, “I dare the tyrants at YouTube to kick me off their platform” for “covering alleged election fraud .” He even went further to talk about the current lawsuit from Texas against the states of Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin that is before the Supreme Court.
Some also question the timing regarding this censorship decision. In the past, YouTube allowed videos that complained about fraud in the 2016 Presidential elections but now are clamping down on this election. The question whether the fact that Google (Google and YouTube are owned by the same company) is engaged in a monopoly lawsuit brought by the U.S. Justice Department  under the Trump Administration has anything to do with their change of mind?
- ^Supporting the 2020 U.S. election. (2020, December 10). Retrieved from https://blog.youtube/news-and-events/supporting-the-2020-us-election (go back↩)
- ^True the Vote Speaks Out Against YouTube Policy to Censor Videos on Election Fraud – True The Vote. (2020, December 10). Retrieved from https://truethevote.org/true-the-vote-speaks-out-against-youtube-policy-to-censor-videos-on-election-fraud (go back↩)
- ^Ep. 1411 I’m Daring YouTube To Kick Me Off YouTube For This – The Dan Bongino Show. (2020, December 09). Retrieved from https://rumble.com/vbpkgx-ep.-1411-im-daring-youtube-to-kick-me-off-youtube-for-this-the-dan-bongino-.html (go back↩)
- ^Swartz, J., & Owens, J. C. (2020). Google officially charged with antitrust by Justice Department. MarketWatch. Retrieved from https://www.marketwatch.com/story/google-antitrust-charges-to-be-announced-by-justice-department-11603200440 (go back↩)