Will YouTube Ban Videos Of Putting Your Head In The Sand Next?

from the how-does-this-help? dept

It appears that Google’s YouTube subsidiary is caving to various government pressure concerning whatever videos the government doesn’t like. This started a while back when Google gave in to pressure from Thailand’s government to ban videos that made fun of the country’s king. But, now the pace is ramping up. Last week, Google gave in to Senator Lieberman, agreeing to ban videos from terrorists, and the latest is giving in to pressure from the UK government to ban videos that show weapons used to intimidate people. Now, YouTube has always banned hate speech or threatening videos, so this new ban seems to go above and beyond that — including videos that show weapons being used to intimidate that aren’t threatening videos themselves. That seems pretty pointless again. The same videos will quickly appear on other sites, and rather than using YouTube as a way to track down anyone who might be breaking the law, Google is helping the UK government put their head in the sand and pretend no one ever is filmed doing anything bad with weapons.

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Companies: google, youtube

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Comments on “Will YouTube Ban Videos Of Putting Your Head In The Sand Next?”

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27 Comments
Relonar says:

All violence on the internet must be stopped! Think of the children and what they are learning through youtube. We could stop all bullying and violence in schools if the children weren’t exposed to it on the internet. As long as these videos of guns, violence, and terrorism exist children will come to repeat these heinous acts in the schools.

I’m sorry ’bout that. I believe that, yes, there should be some limits (if the limits do not infringe on the established rights of the individual in the land that governs them), but I also believe that these limits should fall to the hands of government to enforce (China seems to have a pretty good grasp on this concept, or so I’ve been told). Asking the owner of the platform to police and filter seems like just another way to hide and obscure censorship.

Rory says:

Re: Re:

What utter tosh. Lets ban everything because it all can potentially influence you to shoot your fellow man.

Only legitimate cause of violence is the physical punishment of kids by their parents and this is because of people’s inability to disciple appropriately through verbal reasoning/non-violent techniques.

This, of course, requires intelligence.

Haywood says:

Re: Re: Re:

“Only legitimate cause of violence is the physical punishment of kids by their parents and this is because of people’s inability to disciple appropriately through verbal reasoning/non-violent techniques.

This, of course, requires intelligence.”

So you must be one of those people I see reasoning with a 2 year old, that’s intelligent.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

If you admire so much Chinese censorship, you’re invited to move to China. I prefer having violent kids around than repressive governments and corporations.

Let me go out on a limb and infer from what you’re saying that you’re 40+ or 50+ years old and/or ultra-religious (fundamentalist) christian… the Sarah Palin type of person. The large majority of the younger and/or educated population will be able to tell you that blaming gaming for school violence is just moral panic. If you don’t believe me, I hope that you believe the Pew Research Center: http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080917-the-kids-are-all-right-gamers-well-adjusted-civic-minded.html

Banning content is a very slippery slope because what could seem to be sensible objections towards certain materials will rapidly turn into banning stuff just because someone doesn’t agree with it or doesn’t want it to be exposed to public scrutiny. For example, if you think that restricting access to public information is the way to go (http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080918-federal-lawsuits-take-on-the-humble-hyperlink.html), then I feel obliged to disagree with you.

Relonar says:

Re: Re:

It seems my horrible structuring has gotten he better of me on that post and obscured my true thoughts

for the record to show:
The first paragraph was complete sarcasm

As for the second…rereading it, haven’t a clue today where I was going with that.

I certainly do not think that these types of censorships are a good thing.

The reference to China was supposed to point out an instance where I believe censorship has been taken way too far, but it seems I missed a key step in the logic when writing that post.

The final sentence stands as is.

I should have really proofed that before posting…I certainly see how vaguely and misrepresented my ideas were in that comment
I hope that I didn’t get too much scorn from the community on that one.

Allen (profile) says:

Re: UMmmm

No.

I think that you will find that the First Amendment limits the power of the various branches of US government from creating laws that inhibit/prevent free speech.

Google caving to some US Senator’s request is wrong, but I dont think it’s a constitutional issue.

The UK government is certainly going overboard in making these requests, but last time I checked the UK was not one of the 52 states to which the [US] first amendment applies.

jFive NYC says:

You people need to read and understand the First Amendment before post what you think it means.

Fudge Lieberman and YouTube for caving in to goverment pressure on running their PRIVATE business. I’m sure Google just didn’t want another legal fiasco on their hands.

That said, unlike sex which this country loves to censor, thank you very much Jerry Falwell. Violence can be avoided. Try taking it off YouTube instead of the television? Your focus is in the wrong problem. Try blaming the parents for not blocking sites, etc or for not doing their damn job as parents.

xhi says:

I’m waiting for somebody to do the intimidation Challenge… Start off by intimidating people with knives and uploading it to youtube.. and progressivly move towards cuddly bears traversing through other objects such as scissors.. bottles.. broken bits of electronics.. large library books.. etc… The aim?.. to get the video banned. I’m pretty sure you could get banned for many innocuous objects šŸ˜€

Blatant Coward says:

Ok then in that case we’ll need every copy of every movie ever made with a weapon in it confiscated by RIAA, even though they should have no power in England-from every citizen. They are used to being stoopid, and writing their own laws in bulk lots so they should be up to the task.

I believe the proper phrase here is “What utter knee biters.” Sorry if Knee biters is one word.

George Lucas can re release all privately made movies with walkie talkies replaced in them that any citizens may want back for a “slight” retconning fee.

Zaphod (user link) says:

I wonder if anyone will step in after this PR debacle?

Seems to me with YouTube losing it’s vim and vigor as a sounding board, it’s time for a new startup to move in.

Honestly, YouTube is beginning to seem more like TheirTube the way they are caving as of late (and getting in bed with DRM companies).

And this time, I think the new x-tube provider should remain somewhat unknown, and not sell out. Make it very clear that anything uploaded to their service is the user’s responsibility, and all actions, including takedown, are up to the user (safe harbor).

It would also be nice to see the video available in non-proprietary standards (MP4/AAC), for instance where you have to download them through a java applet that displays ads during (and only during) the download to offset the cost of the bandwidth and protect the source (encryption/decryption).

But these are pipe-dreams, no one would be that smart.

Anonymous Coward says:

Youtube censors videos critical of the church of scientology

Videos and clips that are not infringing and clearly fair use are being arbitrarily removed by youtube staff for tos and dcma violations and are next to impossible to get put back. It seems that youtube needs to grow a pair and stop playing the censor board and start playing fair.

Pussywillow says:

The Internet Causes Bullies?

Wrong. Humannature causes bullies. There were bullies in school long before the Intardweb, before computers, before the discovery of electricity… It is a predatory nature & a fear & distrust of others – perceived as different or weaker – that is the issue. Banning video content doesn’t prevent someone from being a worthless, walking pile of detritus. They will simply go elsewhere. I doubt that the genocidal maniacs who murdered inRwanda got the urge from watching YouTube video clips.

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