Back in 2008, then Senator Joe Lieberman went on a ridiculous pro-censorship campaign, demanding
that YouTube take down any "terrorist" videos. For reasons I still don't understand, YouTube complied
. As a result, watchdogs documenting Syrian atrocities had them censored from YouTube
, because YouTube determined them to be in "violation" of its guidelines in publishing "shocking and offensive videos."
That was a few years ago, and it seems like the problem has only gotten worse -- as have the ridiculous calls for YouTube and other platforms to be the giant censor in the digital sky. The latest victim? Would you believe it's the European Parliament itself? Marietje Schaake, a really wonderful Member of the European Parliament (and a Techdirt reader
), tweeted that the video she had posted of a European Parliament debate on "anti-torture" was taken down for "violating community guidelines."
As you can see, her account was assessed a "strike" for posting a video of a European Parliament debate about torture
. And it notes that if she receives two more such strikes, she may lose her account. Of course, it's quite likely that this was some sort of automated system trying to stop videos on "torture" or somesuch, but really, this is the kind of thing that should keep people worried about all these demands to make platforms censors of "terrorism" or other "bad" stuff. You inevitably get these types of errors. And while it's likely that with enough attention, YouTube will magically reverse its ridiculous position on this video, not everyone is able to get that kind of attention. It makes you wonder what other content is getting blocked because some algorithm, or some clueless individual, can't be bothered to understand what's happening.