The Impossibility Of Content Moderation: YouTube's New Ban On Nazis Hits Reporter Who Documents Extremism, Professor Teaching About Hitler

from the so-that's-all-working-well dept

So just as the recent big content moderation mess was happening on YouTube, the company announced that it had changed its policies to better deal with violent extremism and supremacism on the platform:

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 based on qualities like age, gender, race, caste, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status. This would include, for example, videos that promote or glorify Nazi ideology, which is inherently discriminatory. Finally, we will remove content denying that well-documented violent events, like the Holocaust or the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, took place.

The timing of this announcement was seen as curious (or, at the very least, poorly timed) as it came basically hours after they had refused to take down Steven Crowder’s account (see the earlier post linked above), even though that wasn’t an identical situation — though analogous enough that tons of people commented on it.

In making the announcement, YouTube correctly noted that this new bit of line drawing could represent some problems, including among those tracking hate and extremism:

We recognize 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. And as always, 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. 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.

But within hours of the new policy rolling out, we were already seeing how difficult it is to implement without taking down content that probably deserves to remain up. Ford Fischer, a reporter who tracks extremist and hate groups, and whose work is regularly cited, noted that his own channel had been demonetized.

Fischer than discusses the specific videos that YouTube says is the reason for this — and it does include holocaust denialism, but for the sake of documenting it, not promoting it:

And this gets, once again, to the very problem of expecting platforms to police this kind of speech. The exact same content can mean very different things in different contexts. In some cases, it may be used to promote odious ideology. In other cases, it’s used to document and expose that ideology and the ignorance and problems associated with it.

But how do you craft a policy that can determine one from the other? As YouTube is discovering (truth is, they probably already knew this), the answer is that you don’t. Any policy ends up creating some sort of collateral damage, and the demands from well meaning people mean that the direction this tends to go in leads to greater and greater takedowns. But, if in the process of doing this we end up sweeping the documentation under the rug, that’s a problem as well.

Here’s another example: right after YouTube’s new policy was put in place, a history teacher found that his own YouTube channel was banned. Why? Because he hosted archival footage of Hitler:

?My stomach fell,? Allsop told BuzzFeed News via email. ?I?m a history teacher, not someone who promotes hatred. I share archive footage and study materials to help students learn about the past.?

Once again, it often sounds easy to say something like “well, let’s ban the Nazis.” I’d even argue it’s a reasonable goal for a platform to have a blanket “no Nazis” policy. But the reality is that the implementation is not nearly as easy as many people believe. And the end result can be that archival and documentary footage gets blocked. And that could have serious long term consequences if part of our goal is to educate people about why Nazis are bad.

Of course, none of this should come as a surprise to anyone who’s been dealing with these issues over the past couple of decades. Early attempts to ban “porn” also took down information on breast cancer. Attempts to block “terrorist content” have repeatedly taken down people documenting war crimes. This kind of thing happens over and over and over again and believing that this time will magically be different is a fool’s errand.

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Comments on “The Impossibility Of Content Moderation: YouTube's New Ban On Nazis Hits Reporter Who Documents Extremism, Professor Teaching About Hitler”

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149 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

"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 based on qualities like age, gender, race, caste, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status"

And I would bet that everyone of these elitist is glued to a TV watching the latest in sports.

Lets see in the US Whites are app. 70 of population Latin app. 15% and Black app. 12.5%.

Now flip open the TV and look at a sports channel.
Example:
Basketball with 10 people on the floor average is 9.5 Blacks and .5 White. Many times there are no White with 10 Black.

If this was the other way around you would hear the elitist scream for days.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

racist or extremely uninformed?

Example: Basketball with 10 people on the floor average is 9.5 Blacks and .5 White. Many times there are no White with 10 Black. If this was the other way around you would hear the elitist scream for days.

Professional hockey and numerous other sports are indeed "the other way around" yet no one is demanding any kind of affirmative action policy to diversify the sport.

A Stable Strategic Order says:

If "impossible" as you stated, then Youtube needs shut down.

First: Gosh, as I looked in, 10 comments total in last 3 pieces! You’re really settin’ teh internets on fire, Maz. (Now 20, point stands.)

Now, this link I disclaim in advance, not for the inevitable charges of "anti-Semitism" but because "Brother Nathanael" has the usual accompanying nutty ideas (UFOs and legalizing drugs, usually, which are probably intended "poison pills"). — Nonetheless, it’s topical and he has a right to say it without being censored by a mega-corporation enforcing its own political agenda. Corporations are not promoting "free speech" as even Masnick now notes.

YouTube Bans 156 Of Brother Nathanael’s Videos Tags:

The Jewish censors of YouTube–ADL and SPLC–BANNED 156 of my Videos yesterday. Their reason was that I was "Criticizing a Protected Group." Thus my Videos critical of AIPAC, Jewish Lobbies, Judaism, the Media, and Israel, were BANNED. Sum and substance?-JEWS are "protected" AS A GROUP from being criticized. AS A GROUP Jews can clamor for war, push abortion, promote homosexuality, murder innocent Palestinians and steal their land, and above all, wield insidious influence on Capitol Hill. But if you call them out for doing so they’ll shove a gag down your mouth with their "hate speech" meme and continue on with their mischief and malfeasance.

http://www.realjewnews.com/?p=1372#comment-2746363

Now also topical, a key point of globalism will be enforced by Youtube:

Here’s A List Of Ideas & Statements YouTube Will Ban You For Expressing Under Their New ‘Hate Speech Policy’

YouTube changed their "hate speech" definitions on Wednesday and added, among others, "immigration status" as a new protected class.

http://www.informationliberation.com/?id=60317

*Censorship is the goal. You’re just semi-complaining of what I’ve railed at for years! — And note that it’s a "conservative" who’s removed, no coincidence given the globalist agenda.)

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re:

If "impossible" as you stated, then Youtube needs shut down.

By that logic, so do art sites such as DeviantArt, FurAffinity, and ArtStation. And so do social media sites such as Twitter. And so does 4chan, Imgur, Blogger, Tumblr, LiveJournal, An Archive of Our Own, Medium, and basically any other site like them or the others I listed. Moderation on sites at or near the scale of those named sites will always be “impossible” to get objectively right.

he has a right to say it without being censored by a mega-corporation enforcing its own political agenda

He is not entitled, however, to use someone else’s platform for doing so. Feel free to show me the law that says he is.

JEWS are "protected" AS A GROUP from being criticized

The actions of individual Jewish people, as well as those of the Israeli government, do not sit above criticism. “Criticizing” Jewish people as a monolithic group, however, is the act of an anti-Semite.

Censorship is the goal

Again: Show me the law that says a third-party platform must host speech its admins don’t want to host.

I can wait.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

If they do not want to get sued for political discrimination, they need to apply their rules equally to everyone.

Unless someone slipped in a few new definitions of protected classes such that ‘political party/leaning’ now qualifies I’m pretty sure that’s not a thing, such that any lawsuit arguing ‘political discrimination’ would be nothing more than a cheap PR stunt that would be laughed out of court.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

In most cases, yes. There’s no federal law requiring that public accommodations treat people of different political views the same.

However, FCC regulations would prevent a radio or TV station from accepting advertising only from candidates favored by the station’s management.

I guess no one has made a federal case yet, though judging from all the discrimination acts that the USA has, I expect it won’t be long before this is added to the list. The list is long enough to give the impression that discrimination is not cool.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

"In most cases, yes. There’s no federal law requiring that public accommodations treat people of different political views the same.

However, FCC regulations would prevent a radio or TV station from accepting advertising only from candidates favored by the station’s management."
https://www.quora.com/Can-a-business-deny-their-service-based-on-political-views

r_rolo1 (profile) says:

Hum, that reminds me of something ...

This story reminds me of a certain Austrian-born German that, when it had enough power , started to burn books, films and newspapers because they were incompatible with the "German" values as he saw them…

What was he called? Oh , I remember …. it was …

[ Due to fears of demonetization, the rest of the post was redacted. Apologies in advance ]

Christenson says:

Re: So, let me play a Proud boy....

And let me mock r_rolo1 by saying all kinds of bad things (TM — like ROFLMAO) about him and saying that his (bannable) quotes of my friends are selectively edited and don’t characterize my kind at ALL….

Now I have not "uttered" one word of that German’s ideology… so should I be banned???

[As if we needed more proof that context is almost everything when it comes to moderation and a link lets me put things in any context I like!]

Agammamon says:

YouTube’s New Ban On Nazis

Yaaaaaaaaaas – but no ideological bias in their enforcement, no sir. As long as you’re a shitbag on the right (‘shitbag’ in this case being defined as ‘not being far left’) YT has a new policy to justify demonitizing or removing your channel.

If you’re a shitbag on the left, you get a pass though.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

But many are being persecuted unfairly. It’s getting to the point that every teenage German conscript who was ever ordered to stand guard duty at a concentration camp for as little as a single day is going to be arrested, deported, and put on trial somewhere. People at the top of the military command structure deserve that kind of treatment, but not the people at the bottom who had no choice and were essentially slaves (as all military conscripts are).

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Nuremberg

Yeah, that’s a point of interest to me. See, here in the US army, we teach our soldiers the Geneva Conventions so they know enough to know what not to do, so they can be individually tried.

Then we make sure they’ll be really, really sorry if they disobey or fail to act on an order that might be illegal (whether by the UCMJ or the numerous global laws) such as targeting and destroying what is clearly a civilian target. Essentially, fail to obey and you’ll be the guy in the barrel until you’re either dead or they find reason to imprison you.

Some of our troopers under those circumstances had the good sense to just have a mental breakdown right there on the spot. Sadly, it stays with them and they end up forever conflicted about how they failed the best army in the world when they couldn’t follow through on a questionable order.

So when our soldiers are being told to execute captives or torture them or whatevs, there’s nothing short of a gun to their head. And a conscientious objection will leave them restrained on the front bumper of a front-line tank.

I bet gun to my head wasn’t an accepted excuse at Nuremberg either.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Nuremberg

See, here in the US army, we teach our soldiers the Geneva Conventions so they know enough to know what not to do

But how well did that theory work in practice, such as in the Abu Ghraib P.O.W. prison in Iraq? American soldiers there were apparently so confident that they were doing nothing wrong that they documented the whole thing with photographs that they themselves posed in.

At least the soldiers who perpetrated the My Lai Massacre weren’t naive enough to take trophy pictures.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Abu Ghraib

My understanding was that the photos were part of the torture regimen, and may have even been staged to be released to the Republican Guard.

Curiously, the Bush administration asserted at the time that the incidents were isolated, and numerous soldiers involved were convicted (of dereliction of duty, maltreatment, aggravated assault and battery), imprisoned and dishonorably discharged, the torture memos would show that the White House authorized enhanced interrogation techniques before the invasion in 2003 in which White House Council Yoo opined international humanitarian laws were obsolete in the War on Terror.

So given the soldiers were trained regarding the Geneva conventions and international law, were ordered by the chain of command to torture POWs, disregarded their training about legality to follow orders and ultimately took the fall suffering imprisonment and dishonorable discharge, it seems to work the way command intended: our soldiers will sacrifice themselves for their commanders, whether it means eating a bullet on the front line or taking the blame for war crimes under orders.

These days, most war crimes committed by US forces are by private military contractors which make up 75% of our active forces in hot zones. (When a news agency reports 15,000 troops deployed in Afghanistan, you can safely figure the value is four times that, so 60,000 troops. The unreported unites are PMCs.)

The rules of engagement the US assigns to DoD units are different than the ones it assigns to PMCs. Also, most of our casualties are PMCs which are not reported.†

Similarly, US black sites are abroad and the agents that torture US detainees are not US citizens, so the US can arguably declare it does not torture, even though these interrogators are paid from the US treasury. Before the term was enhanced interrogation it was extraordinary rendition which described transport of a detainee to a US-controlled black site. The US still does this, to the glee of the current President of the United States.

† News agencies commonly only report deaths, those soldiers KIA. They tend not to mention the thousands and thousands of casualties that come home alive with TBIs which the DVA has shown to have no interest in treating.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Hunting down the Auschwitz custodial staff

Yeah, pretty much the entire world is really angry about that whole holocaust affair.

Part of the problem is that we see the capacity for the same cruelty in ourselves. But we don’t want to, so we pretend Germans are monsters. We overcompensate. We see the purge-happy nationalists among our neighbors and are terrified of what happens next.

France imprisoned or executed some of their own resistance as collaborators. And Israelis are often wont to dehumanize Palestinians the same way.

Ideological wars are an ugly mess and we should try to engage in them less often. But when we’re lean and hungry we’re desperate for scapegoats to accuse of eating all the food.

It hasn’t stopped us from starting the whole purge process again, the migrants at the borders here in the US are our first batch. We already have the workcamps set up with no oversight so they can be abused by ICE agents with impunity. Even the kids. Trump and Miller are eager to close the perimeter to exclude naturalized Americans.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Waffen SS Officer Reinhold Hanning was the last of thirty officers stationed at German death camps who had not personally killed anyone at a camp. German courts decided in a ruling in 2013 that accessory to Genocide qualified for life imprisonment. So it arguably did happen. SS Unterscharführer Oskar Gröning, an accountant who recorded valuable goods taken from prisoners at Auschwitz applied for a pardon in January having been convicted of accessory. His appeal was rejected, but he died before beginning to serve his sentence.

As horrible as the Holocaust was, the fact that over 100,000 people participated in the German genocide machine tells me this is not something that is fixed by imprisoning everyone involved. Rather we should be investigating the process by which we naked apes so readily turn on our own countryfolk as if they are the enemy. How could those participants believe they were making the world a better place by participating in mass murder?

That’s the question we should be answering. And that’s the question we’ve failed to answer, so now we’re approaching doing it again, and people who think purges are an acceptable idea to consider speak openly, and get media time.

If there’s a world left, I wonder if every participant of US purges are going to face trial, and lifetime imprisonment when they are convicted.

In the meantime, putting old people in prison doesn’t serve justice. It doesn’t bring back the slain, nor does it help us change course as our societies are reconsidering mass purges again.

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3

That a participant in a genocide is now old should have no bearing on whether they should be put in jail for their crimes. Living for decades after the fact does not acquit them of those crimes — and neither does the kind of cowardice that says “putting old people in prison doesn’t serve justice”.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Cowardice

In my opinion, it’s more cowardly to put people in prison than not. Justice systems of punishment or imprisonment imply that the people who committed these deeds acted outside the realm of human nature. We as a species are terrified to consider that it is within our own capacity, given the circumstances, to commit such horrors, ourselves. And as such, we’ve done very little to prevent purges in the future, and (provided the species doesn’t shit itself to extinction) we will create purge machines again, and massacre human beings by the millions, and probably imprison accountants and janitors who participated, decades later.

If that’s justice, then fuck justice.

While I cannot speak for the German justice system, here in the US we have decided extrajudicial detention and torture by the state is entirely legal, as are the massacres of our drone-strike campaigns. We also top of our prison cells with warm bodies for small infractions, such as drug possession, and there is no justice to be seen for the people who implemented these policies, or the agents who participated in our torture / detention system. Rather than seeking to uncover the roots of these policies, we’ve buried them, with the full torture report all but annihilated, and our sitting President having promised he’ll step up the torture program as high as it will go.

If this is justice, then fuck justice.

So sure, feel free to call me a coward. I’m terrified of facing my own nation’s purge machine, and will cow before the SWAT team that will eventually come to collect me. And I expect while I may fantasize about a daring escape, I will likely be led at gunpoint all the way to my own processing.

At that point, whether or not someone gets the guy who got me, whether I’m ash or a lampshade, will not matter to me a jot.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Dangerous Criminals

We’re not talking about dangerous criminals. We’re talking about people who acted in the service of a state institution. We’re talking about people who, had they dissented, would have found themselves quickly on the other side of the barricades in line to be processed. We’re talking about people who had no reason to believe the allies were going to come and stop all this nonsense any day now.

What would you have said to them then, Stephen T. Stone? Would you have chastised them for choosing to survive over human principle? If you had to choose between being an Auschwitz clerk or an Auschwitz prisoner, what would you do? That’s a hard call to make.

How about this, Stephen T. Stone what advice would you offer to a soldier in the US commanded to torture or execute prisoners, knowing that if he refused he’d be imprisoned for failure to follow orders and tried in court martial under the current administration policies? Would you tell him to follow his orders, or sacrifice his life and family to principle?

Because the US is on a (proverbial) train toward mass purges, and no one seems to be interested in stopping it or directing it onto a turnout. If we don’t do something, I can expect in ten years I’m going to be regarded as a dangerous criminal without trial. I will be collected and sent to the camps to be processed. If I’m unlucky it just means I’ll be worked to death over months.

At that point, Stephen T. Stone, assuming you live in the US, you might hope the Allies come before that perimeter closes.

R,og S/ says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

…and this form of intellectual minimalisation of the perspective of the soldiers/workers is EXACTLY why Hitler marched folks off into camps.

Hitler was very conscious of how the intellectual academic elite built a wall between themselves, and the soldiers that they took for granted.

On one hand, the elites hid behind the soldiers /police protections, on the other, singled out individuals just like you did there who had to make hard choices.

I bet your hands are soft and puffy like a clown, not a callous ever, much less a trigger finger.

And that finger, beholden to hard and realpersonal choices such that Uriel outlined above.

And I bet you have a special ticket to Escape Pod Israel too, so that you are never held accountable for lives that you/your perspective has harmed or altered .

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Yaaaaaaaaaas – but no ideological bias in their enforcement, no sir. As long as you’re a shitbag on the right (‘shitbag’ in this case being defined as ‘not being far left’) YT has a new policy to justify demonitizing or removing your channel.

If you think saying "we ban nazis" is indicative of an "ideological bias" against "the right," then, um, that says a LOT more about your ideological views. And what it says is not good.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 The merits of Nazism

I don’t think anyone really discusses or debates the merits of nazism. Mostly what I see is approval of authoritarianism, of segregationism, derision of undesirable groups and calls for their internment, denaturalization or genocide, also approval of officials who share these opinions and have expressed them publicly. Also derision of political officials who have opposed such opinions.

I’ve never heard anyone point out that (say) authoritarianism allows policy to be changed and enacted quickly without compromise (in contrast to democracy which crawls like the Holy See) or that it gets the proles enthusiastic about participation in the group (usually through demagogic propaganda).

Mostly it’s just how awful the Jews / Migrants / Blacks / Gays are and how life will be so much better once we evict them to somewhere else and how great Trump (or whoever) is, who affirmed this notion. That’s less extolling the virtues of National Socialism or Fascism and more just saying Hey, everyone, Hating Jews is so cool!

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Demonization of the defenseless.

The problem is it works. When scarcity is felt, we start looking for a portion of our population to cull, like rats who turn on each other when the food supply runs out. Turning on someone is a natural instinct since before we had hands.

The rich have the power to amplify their voice and direct that violence. And they are doing just that.

TFG says:

Re: Re: Re:5 The merits of Nazism

The benevolent dictatorship is probably the best form of government, mostly due to the efficiency and, due to being benevolent, lacking in corruption.

Unfortunately, humanity is incapable of realizing this form of government. Benevolence and dictatorial power do not mesh with human nature. Power corrupts. People with power and money lose perspective. The benevolence does not get realized.

Authoritarianism is alluring because it promises the power to just fix the problem. I see things like the horrific treatment of asylum seekers and hopeful immigrants, and I desire the ability to simply dismantle ICE and rebuild CBP.

I see the Department of Energy rebranding some aspect of fossil fuels as Molecules of Freedom and I want the power to rescind that and fire the people responsible.

I see the news reports about what the lobbying system and regulatory capture realm we have in certain aspects of society, and the results thereof, and I desire the power to kick all the lobbyists out, to take the corporations responsible, and drive them into the ground after forcing them to do the right thing.

These are all authoritarian actions. Dictatorial power affords the potential to do these things. But in the process, whatever my good intentions, I would eventually become the problem. Authoritarianism is a trap.

Fiction is full of stories of the Good King, the excellent leader with a birthright whose reign would be a paradise. Unfortunately, with humanity, that’s doomed to be nothing more than a fiction.

Padpaw (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

what happens when the word nazi is used simply because someone disagreed with you, not because they support the nazis? Like calling someone a racist because they criticized Obama.

I am all for shutting down nazis, what I take issue with is the term nazi being applied to everyone and anyone that disagrees with the person doing the moderation regardless if they actually are one or not.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

According to ars commenters, I am a nazi and a nazi defender. I disagreed with a post by one of the commenters. Yet, I think just last week, commenters sent in the grammar nazis, they insist another person is a nazi defender and the tell them to capitalize "nazi." A lot of nazis at ars anymore, according to them.

I almost turned my adblocker back on then realized it was the commenters, not the writers. Still debating as I was abused, according to ars rules, by being called other names as well. Doesn’t hurt my feelings, but I feel if I had said it, I would have been banned, according to their posting rules. I don’t think most moderators even know what to moderate means. The only time you feel power is when it is used.

ECA (profile) says:

history and understanding..

They are (who ever THEY ARE) ..
Are making things complicated for little to now(know) reasons.
I like talking to Some religious persons about Facts inthe past(last 1000 years) and HOW the bible was/is and the changes made over time. and see if they know/understand the ramifications of what has happened.

  1. how old is the New testament?(not very)
  2. how long has it been since People(not clergy) got a copy of the bible?(not that long)
  3. what was Before the New testament, and how did we treat people, THEN??

Getting people to see and understand abit about history, and their OWN beliefs is so much fun, and 99% dont even know that the Bible old testament is from the Jewish religion; those persons we persecuted, for years..

Knowing Cause and affect(not effect) can tell you Why/how Hitler took over a nation. understanding things HELPS us see what is happening even NOW.. A democracy that only has 2 choices Placed infront of you, ISNT a real democracy…Its better when WE choose who we wish to Vote for…NOT when 2 agencies(30% of the nation, not the other 70%) select the best idiot.

the Diagnostics of the past are wonderful to see and learn..trying to get the WHOLE story..

If the internet does not fight back, and JUST adheres to the common Cacophony of Meaningless BS..is like Bitching at the Dictionary for using bad/dirty/derogatory/medically correct words.

Cdaragorn (profile) says:

Re: Re:

That’s funny, because in this very article (not to mention all the other articles where he has previously encouraged this same idea already) he proves you wrong.

His answer is that it would be far better to empower individuals to moderate for themselves than to try to push that responsibility on central entities. Now you can have a good discussion on the merits or not of that idea, but flatly lying about what he says isn’t getting you anywhere.

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re: Re:

it would be far better to empower individuals to moderate for themselves than to try to push that responsibility on central entities

Individuals should have better tools for self-moderation/filtering/etc. That, I will not dispute. But the platform’s admins should have the tools necessary to help prevent or punish violations of the TOS. The responsibility must lie on both sides — balanced, at least as best a platform can get it.

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

You know, YouTube admins have explicitly banned porn from the platform since pretty much the get-go. But not only can I still watch porn on sites other than YouTube, I can also talk about it on sites other than YouTube. It’s almost as if a specific type of content being banned from YouTube doesn’t rob people of their right to free speech. Imagine that~.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

The fundamental issue is this – while the Nazis know that they can quite easily set up NaziTube and be free to do whatever they want, they also know there’s no way in hell that platform will come even close to either the viewership or revenue YouTube can offer. So, they want to force others to host their speech rather than exercise the actual freedoms they possess.

Roy Rogers says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

I agree. Same thing for LGBTQ+2 3 or 4 or whatever we are at now(been a few days since I looked, could be to the power of by now).

Breeders and non-breeders don’t have much in common, why don’t they make/find a site I don’t visit? Mostly the T’s, like Kaitlyn Jenner, threatening and promoting violence. Telling little Benny Shapiro he would leave in an ambulance if he kept talking. I don’t think we need scum like her on youtube where I am forced to listen to her. She can make her own trannyoutootube. Or do you think they just want a larger audience for more attention regarding the abuse they suffer on youtube and tell them how they should run their business?

Anyone who says they don’t like this site, Techdirt, for whatever reason, is told they do not have to visit it. Why are you people forced to go to youtube when their is so much vile speech that you cannot tolerate it. Shouldn’t you people be the ones to find a site you do like and can tolerate? As you tell to everyone else?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

"Breeders and non-breeders don’t have much in common, why don’t they make/find a site I don’t visit?"

Because people and communities are defined by far more than their sexuality.

"Anyone who says they don’t like this site, Techdirt, for whatever reason, is told they do not have to visit it."

This is true.

"Why are you people forced to go to youtube when their is so much vile speech that you cannot tolerate it"

Because, no matter what you and your hate-filled little people tell each other, you are not in the majority.You’re a tiny majority of people, even though you are loud and disruptive. That noise you hear is not the sound of the good guys getting shut down, it’s the loud obnoxious drunk getting kicked out of the bar so everybody else can enjoy a quiet drink.

Most videos on YouTube have nothing to do with hate speech. There are many, many subjects that don’t remotely touch on it, well until you guys decide to introduce it in comments. But, the fact is, when given a choice between Nazis and gays, most people are going to choose the gays. Deal with it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Who are "you guys?"

I watch comedy and documentaries. Never have posted anything to youtube, not even a comment. Nor do I watch anything I don’t want to.

Sounds like you want to go to a rock concert but expect everyone to behave like you are at the Opera. Just realize that once the rules are changed, you will no longer be going to a rock concert, you will be going to the Opera and wishing there was a rock concert you could go see.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

"Who are "you guys?""

Well, generally speaking the only people I hear whining about this are the people who’ve been kicked off these platforms for being asshole or their followers.

"Sounds like you want to go to a rock concert but expect everyone to behave like you are at the Opera."

No, but it does mean that if I’m at the opera then it’s OK to kick out the dickhead listening to rock while everyone else is trying to enjoy the show. The same applies in the reverse, of course, but you’re less likely to find a disruptive opera listener for the most part so you won’t hear about it as much.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

"Because, no matter what you and your hate-filled little people tell each other, you are not in the majority.You’re a tiny majority of people, even though you are loud and disruptive. That noise you hear is not the sound of the good guys getting shut down, it’s the loud obnoxious drunk getting kicked out of the bar so everybody else can enjoy a quiet drink."
No tolerance for minorities, got it. Not even one loudmouth allowed. Does this apply to everywhere you go? All the sites you visit? Certainly aligns with your bullying nature. Or are you trying to make it personal for another reason only "you people" understand?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

"No tolerance for minorities"

Tolerance, yes. But, tolerence has its limits and "Nazi" is not a protected class so off you go.

"Not even one loudmouth allowed"

In a place where other people want quiet, yes. If you’re being repeatedly kicked out of the library for making too much noise, you’re the asshole, not the librarian.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

So nazis and assholes. What about alcoholic beverage drinkers? Majority of them are assholes too, shall we ban alcohol?

If people are going to twitter, youtube and the like for peace and quiet…let me tell you, there are some real assholes out there so I wish you luck!

At least you proved, again, you have no argument. Thanks!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190606/13363042344/impossibility-content-moderation-plays-out-once-again-youtube.shtml#c1193

Are you stupid enough to think I believe you have rights removed when you go to youtube?

I believe you made it personal first because you had no argument, nice try on reversal though

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

"I don’t think youtube comments is analogous to a library study setting."

No, they’;re not, but a library is a good example of a place that has a set of community standards and rules that everybody should follow, and people can happily kicked out for annoying people even if they haven’t done anything illegal.

Do you have a better example, or shall I use smaller words so you can understand the basic points being made?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

"Have you gone in and told them people are saying things, quietly, you don’t like and ask them to remove that person because of your feelings?"

No, I just let the people responsible for moderating the community do their jobs and enjoy the community as free from assholes as possible that they build for me.

That seems to work, it’s only recently that people have started whining like babies because they want a free audience.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: So the censorship from the media and the left isn't working

Totally! It would be great if Saturday morning television started including all kinds of cursing and gratuitous sex scenes for our young children’s consumption. It’s far past time to eliminate that censorship.

Or maybe, just maybe, censorship is tailored to the intended audience and your extremist views simply aren’t suitable for the intended audiences of Facebook, Twitter and others. I’m sure there are other sites and platforms you could use though.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Sex and violence on Saturday Morning

It’s a curious phenomenon to me how our ratings systems (the MPAA, the ESRB) invariably turn into censorship states, where the most-adult tier (NC-17 / AO) is not provided a market by resellers, so content publishers have to negotiate with the rating company just to be seen.

If that wasn’t such a consistent phenomenon, I’d argue that there is a difference between a rating system and a censorship state, but the former seems to always beget the latter.

And her in the states, we’re happy to let our kids watch shows in which people blast each other apart so long as it’s not current firearms (GI Joe’s lasers, Batman TAS’ tommy guns) and so long as they don’t bleed real blood — See Tron: Legacy. In the meantime if we can’t admit that people have genitals or do things with them.

So I’d argue that all attempts at ratings so far suck. Maybe we’re getting better with content warnings but we still can’t (for instance) see kids die horribly in games set in places where kids are prone to die horribly (say in games during a massive plague or in a war zone). Nor can we hear a wounded enemy beg for his life or scream for his mother (common in real combat) because our censors feel games shouldn’t distress their players overmuch.

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Ratings systems are a form of moderation — and, as you may be aware, moderation is never perfect. What might be PG-13 to one person may seem like an R to another. What one child might be traumatized by seeing, another may have no issues with watching. Nudity in a specific context may be non-sexual, but a ratings system likely makes no distinction between sexual and non-sexual contexts. No ratings system can account for every little subjective factor, just as no moderation system can do the same.

Anonymous Coward says:

Sorry Maza
Your the only one who wants to take it up the Ass
Your only 2% of the population
The rest dont give a fuck what you do behind closed doors
So leave you tube alone with your
whiny crying shit that your offended by #LWC
Sorry this aint the playground where the teacher can save your sorry ass
Oh by the way Trump 2020 🙂

Dave says:

Re: Sorry Maza

Someone could do with a few lessons re. grammar and spelling. Lack of both these qualities doesn’t exactly give a resounding impression of high intelligence or a decent education but it DOES seem to be a qualification for expounding top-grade cattle excrement and the "sport" of extreme trolling. When someone starts to lose an argument, they quite often resort to insults, profanities and (in this case) obscenities. Sound like anyone we know? I would imagine that this particular foul-mouthed cretin would probably be less than keen to utter similar expletives in a face-to-face situation. Very much a cowardly Trump-type person, I’m guessing.

Anonymous Coward says:

So NOW it's censorship huh?

Gee, it’s ALMOST like Conservatives were bitching about stuff like this for awhile now and taking Youtube to court over it.

Even liberals like TIm Pool and Sargon of Akkad are complaining about Youtube censorship.

"HURR DURR, it’s not the gubment doing it!"

Who said that? Oh yeah, a good chunk of people around here when you guys MOCKED conservatives for complaining about it.

Do you guys like your pie with humble or crow?

Stephen T. Stone (profile) says:

Re:

So NOW it’s censorship huh?

Do a quick search for the word “censor” and note how many times it comes up in the article.

it’s ALMOST like Conservatives were bitching about stuff like this for awhile now and taking Youtube to court over it

How many of them managed to have a court rule that YouTube must host their speech no matter what?

Anonymous Coward says:

Is Youtube TRYING to kill itself?

they’re banning videos that "glorify" violence such as 1066 the battle of hastings, anything featuring King Henry VIII (had wives killed), historical battle documentaries, blacksmithing videos where swords etc are forged.

LARPing videos, RPGs, game videos featuring shooting (everything from CoD to Space Invaders falls foul of their rules).

Google is shutting down so many services, from Google Trip systems to NEST, and only plans to run Google Stadia for 12months and close the servers.

Now they want rid of Youtube…..

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

So, why are people just sitting around whining about how mean they are rather than doing something?

Making a new platform would require work, and even if they did create such a platform the only people who would want to use it would be deplorable people, vastly reducing the number of people that would be exposed to any content posted to it.

No no, much easier to use someone else’s platform where everyone else already is and then whine about how you totally have a right to use that platform despite the platform owners not wanting you there because of such trivial things like ‘violating the TOS’ and/or ‘generally being a reprehensible person’.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

TOS is just CYA.
Most people seem to get kicked off due to complaints from others, not because platform owners decided someone violated the TOS. Exactly like copyright.

If I was that platform owner, I would have better things to do than to pull dick weeds from online, like trimming bushes

Did Crowders videos trigger the platform owners to action? They have a pretty slow reaction time. I was of the impression they reacted to Mazas’ complaints
"The latest situation began when Vox video producer Carlos Maza posted publicly on Twitter about Steven Crowder"
https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190606/13363042344/impossibility-content-moderation-plays-out-once-again-youtube.shtml

Lawrence D’Oliveiro says:

Re: Re: Or that the standard you're holding them to

It might not matter, except that they have become just too powerful, with too much influence on our society, to be left to their own devices. If they cannot or will not be trusted to regulate themselves, then regulations will have to be imposed on them.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Or that the standard you're holding them to

Because what they can and cannot do will definitely change when they’re facing regulations put forth by people who don’t have a clue what moderating a platform of that size actually entails, just like all those people saying ‘secure broken encryption isn’t possible’ are in fact just lazy, and will be able to do what they claim is impossible as soon as some good old regulations are applied.

Out of curiosity, as the person saying they are ‘too powerful, with too much influence on our society’, just what do you think they should be doing/not doing/forced to do/not do?

As for the idea that if someone has ‘too much power and/or influence’ they need to be reigned in, simply because they have power and/or influence and aren’t using it in the way you think they should, that’s an idea straight out of a dystopian fiction novel. To the extent they have power and influence it’s because people choose to use them, and if a better alternative showed up they’d find just how fickle that power can be.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 people who don't have a clue what moderating

No, they know exactly what they’re doing. Which includes knowing that there’s no magic algorithm that’s capable of perfectly moderating the volume of content they have. There will be mistakes, and they have to err on the side of caution, which creates more false positives. Regulation isn’t going to create the magic wand for them.

Thad (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 people who don't have a clue what moderating

Therefore it’s time to put somebody in charge who will be answerable to us, the ordinary people.

We can’t even reach a consensus about how YouTube should be moderated among a handful of people in this comments thread, Lawrence. Good luck finding a consensus among all "ordinary people".

I am concerned about the power of large providers like YouTube in steering public discourse. But there’s no easy solution there, either. I wouldn’t be averse to breaking up Alphabet, but as Mike has noted, that wouldn’t mean people would start using other video sites besides YouTube.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 people who don't have a clue what moderating

Exactly. While it’s understandable why there’s an aversion to "too big", there’s no natural way to break these companies up that will make a real difference. Like them or not, the simply fact of the matter is that most people are choosing to use YouTube freely.

The only "solution" is for people to start using the many competing sites. But, the people who should be leaving YouTube in droves are instead whining and trying to demand YouTube are forced by government to do what they want. While they keep doing that rather than using the many free market options available to them, nothing will change. Add that to the fact that other companies who might wish to enter the space are being put off by the amount of flack YouTube gets about both what they do and what they don’t do, and it’s clear that simply forcing them to be somehow smaller will not change their dominance.

The way to get this to change is the same as it is for any large company – when you have choice, exercise it. Nobody’s going to listen to you whining when you keep going back to the same company and giving them all of your business.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 people who don't have a clue what moderating

"The only "solution" is for people to start using the many competing sites. But, the people who should be leaving YouTube in droves are instead whining and trying to demand YouTube are forced by government to do what they want."

You finally see it! Congratulations! Do you still want to boot Crowder then? Jail anyone in possession of a video you don’t like?

Or are you going to move on to a site populated by real comedians, decent people, like Bill Cosby and Louis CK?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 people who don't have a clue what moderating

"Jail anyone in possession of a video you don’t like?"

Whoever that is in your fantasy dream world seems like a bad guy, but it’s not me.

Nobody’s suggested jailing anybody. they’re just saying that if YouTube don’t want to host Crowder for whatever reason, that’s their right. The only people arguing with this are the ones wanting to remove YouTube’s right to refuse service that exists for every physical business.

"decent people, like Bill Cosby and Louis CK?"

You see, the problem with modern day discourse is that it’s impossible for me to tell if this was meant to be a clue that you’re joking, or if you’re actually serious.

Padpaw (profile) says:

Ironically Fascism

Is anyone really surprised at this? Hate speech used as a false justification to ban. When you have people that use your platform that you dislike but they never break any of your rules. Then you have to use something like "hate speech" to justify banning them.

The lemmings openly supported this censorship thinking it would only be used against people they dislike. They don’t know their history. This will be used to censor and shut down everyone. Because everything is considered hate speech to someone else.

Youtube has already said criticizing immigration will get you banned. Because reasons.

This has nothing to do with hate speech. it is all about controlling the narrative and making sure people live in an echo chamber. Anyone who dares to disagree will be censored.

If they had their way this website would be blacklisted simply because it criticizes those in power.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Just... no

Is anyone really surprised at this? Hate speech used as a false justification to ban.

Yes, clearly they really had it out for the… let’s see, ‘reporter who tracks extremist and hate groups’ and ‘history teacher’, such that they were just itching to find some excuse to kick them off the platform they already have full control over.

When you have people that use your platform that you dislike but they never break any of your rules. Then you have to use something like "hate speech" to justify banning them.

Well, no, they don’t. It’s their platform, they can simply say ‘we find the speech/content you are using our platform to promote to be offensive and/or against our values. While the content may not technically be against the TOS of our platform, we still find them objectionable enough that we must insist that you either stop posting that sort of content on our platform, or we will be forced to revoke your access to our platform.’

It’s not like they’re a store open to the public and ‘political affiliation’/’racist loser’/’person identifying as a nazi’ are protected classes or anything(well, not yet anyway, I imagine there are more than a few who would love to change that due to being ‘fine people’ who are facing ‘unfair persecution’). If YT wants to kick someone off they can simply kick them off, no need to go through a song and dance, especially if they know that the ‘fake’ process will just result in an even bigger mess for them than simply booting someone from the platform.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Just... no

Then why did they wait until now to ban these people or to demonetize them? if they always had the power to do so, why use the excuse it’s hate speech. It would have been hate speech before now.

The only reason to need a justification would be they could not ban people just because they didn’t like them.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Just... no

If that’s the only reason you can think of, that’s down to your lack of imagination, not a problem with YouTube.

There’s a combination of issues here. One is that some people who are not intended to be banned got caught up as false positives, as will always happen with things like this. The problem with the described issues in the article are down to algorithms not understanding context, and so removing Hitler videos whether they’re for education or propaganda purposes. Not that YouTube suddenly decided they didn’t like someone.

The other is that until recently, they stood to make more money by keeping the hate speech on the platform than they did by blocking them. Now that this dynamic has changed and they’re likely to lose more money by keeping them, off they go.

There’s no mystery or conspiracy here unless you want to invent one. It’s simply business, combined with only imperfect tools being possible at this moment in time.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Just... no

Wait, just to confirm, do you actually think they did have something against a reporter documenting extremists and hate groups and a teacher? Because those are the two examples in the story and my comment, and your response would seem to indicate that you do indeed believe that.

If you meant more in general, I’d say because assholes tend to draw eyeballs, and it was worth more money for them to look the other way than crack down before now.

As for why bring the hammer down now, rising social and political pressure brought about by politicians and the press riling up gullible people for cheap PR and power would explain that nicely.

Padpaw (profile) says:

Re: Re: Just... no

I am curious are you referencing trump’s very fine people quote?

If so you really should go look up what he actually said instead of what people say he said.

https://www.politico.com/story/2017/08/15/full-text-trump-comments-white-supremacists-alt-left-transcript-241662

TRUMP: Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me. I saw the same pictures as you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down, of to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.

and I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally – but you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists, okay? And the press has treated them absolutely unfairly. Now, in the other group also, you had some fine people, but you also had troublemakers and you see them come with the black outfits and with the helmets and with the baseball bats – you had a lot of bad people in the other group too.

He was talking about the people that were there to protest the statues being torn down. he distinctly seperated those protesters from the neo nazis that were there. Just as he seperated those supporting tearing down the statues from the antifa members.

There were fine people at those protests that were for and against the statues that did peaceful protesting.

There were very bad and nasty people on both sides as well. The neo nazis and antifa both of those groups used violence against anyone that disagreed with them.

Trump is an idiot but I cannot stand people lying about him to make him look bad. he does well enough on his own to make himself look bad.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: The statue-preservation protestors

[In his very fine people quote, Trump] was talking about the people that were there to protest the statues being torn down.

Considering the context of those statues, that still puts them on the spectrum pretty close to definitely-not-fine people.

But as soon as the banner-waving torch-bearing Jews will not replace us! screaming white nationalists were dominating the scene, any very fine people got the Hell out of dodge. Anyone remaining were okay with associating with the neo-nazis and being seen associating with definitely-not-fine people.

When I go to Gay Pride, I expect that I will be associated with the flamboyant and outrageous. If my picture is taken with transvestites in full Broadway regalia makes the news and the internet infers I’m totally gay, gay, gay, then so be it. These are consequences I’m willing to risk.

When these hypothetical very fine people in Charleston went to protest a statute takedown (say they were academic history buffs) but discovered it was a white-nationalism rally, and they chose to stay and chant along, I’d think they knew they were going to be associated with Nazis and not their fellow historical preservationists. In fact I bet they worked out they were nazis (along with being academic history buffs — some rare birds are.)

Besides which, were I to give Trump the benefit of doubt and assume he was flubbing his words while trying to talk off the cuff (all of which is in character). We’d still have plenty of other incidents to show he really hates anything nonwhite and non-male.

Calling Nazis very fine people is very on brand for him and his base of Lock her up! chanters. Even if that’s not exactly what he said, it’s plausible that’s what he meant to say. It’s plausible that he only was saying something different because he was pressured by his advisors not to say something totally racist.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 The statue-preservation protestors

To just comment on your comparison there – if I go to a gay-focussed event, I’m not afraid of being accidentally assumed to be gay. Partly because everyone whose opinion I care about knows I’m not and partly because I’m not homophobic. I’m there to join friends, both gay and straight, in a party atmosphere.

Given that, I can only assume that these "fine people" believe the same thing about white supremacy. If they’re not Nazis themselves, then they certainly have no problem mingling with them or even being mistaken for one.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 The statue-preservation protestors

Not that theres anything wrong with that…

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/NotThatTheresAnythingWrongWithThat

As a cultural observer, sociologist, and an accredited journalist, I repudiate your observation of guilt by association, assumption, and imputing motives.

Some of us go to places like that for other reasons, not least of which is to see how violent BOTH SIDES ARE, and then, to watch police provocateurs and ADL /JDL inspired fake protesters cause conflict.

R,og S/ says:

Creating the Nazi

This form of speech suppression is a ritualized book burning and it is no different than Hitlers book burnings, but because the same group of industrial capitalists and MIC/big tech affiliated players that are behind it are Jewish, we call it somethi.g other than book burning.

Its called deplatforming.

The scholar might recall that Hitler himself rounded up the top opinion leaders and “influencers ” too, for the Beerhall Putsch.

https://www.britannica.com/event/Beer-Hall-Putsch

And, I am certain that the same toxic group of leftists from the racist, sectarian ADL descends from the same ideoligical thread behind our current roundup/deplatforming too.

These zionazis create and recreate the right -left binaries that enable Nazis one generation to the next with these exact tactics.

Nazis are a golem created by those who fear lashon hara.

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