YouTube has pledged to censor politicians who break their arbitrarily-decided rules on what can and cannot be said, according to a Wednesday report.
“When you have a political officer that is making information that is really important for their constituents to see, or for other global leaders to see, that is content that we would leave up because we think it’s important for other people to see,” YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said at The Atlantic Festival Wednesday, according to POLITICO.
Wojcicki was addressing whether political figures could be censored on the video giant’s platform, which is owned by Google. She spoke diplomatically in front of the crowd, but there’s a caveat. Politicians still have to follow the rules set forth by the Big Tech titan.
“A YouTube spokesperson later told POLITICO that politicians are not treated differently than other users and must abide by its community guidelines,” the report said. “The company grants exemptions to some political speech if the company considers it to be educational, documentary, scientific, or artistic in nature.”
In other words, politicians are not absolutely allowed to use YouTube to speak freely about what they believe. If YouTube deems a politician’s content to be a violation of its terms of service, that content can be removed.
We already see this happening with individuals – most of whom are right-leaning political influencers, commentators, reporters, or activists. Many, like our own Laura Loomer, have been banned by Silicon Valley giants for expressing ordinary conservative viewpoints. But now, YouTube is vowing to take similar action against elected officials, leveling up in the way of political censorship. Elected officials used to be able to purvey messages through social media that they would not otherwise be able to purvey. Now, they’ll have to clear those messages with YouTube.
How could this possibly have a positive outcome for conservatives, who have already been marginalized on the web?
This is the second egregious act by the tech company in the past seven days. The company last week banned Right Side Broadcasting Network (RSBN) from live streaming. That’s a huge problem for RSBN, given that it made its money via donations while live streaming President Donald J. Trump’s rallies. It provided a fantastic service to Americans who support the President, and one that ordinary cable news does not provide specifically in order to spite Trump. At the drop of a hat, that service was nuked. Soon, the YouTube channels of elected officials with the “wrong” opinions could go the same way.
Twitter is behaving accordingly.
In a piece titled “Twitter won’t censor Trump’s rule-breaking tweets, but it will make them harder to find,” which would be defined by George Orwell as “doublespeak” (making Trump’s tweets harder to find is the definition of censorship) Vox lobbied on behalf of silencing the president.
“Tweets from world leaders that would ordinarily break Twitter’s rules but are kept up because they are considered newsworthy — such as attacks from President Donald Trump — are about to get harder to see,” the piece said in a celebratory manner.
Twitter implemented a protocol to make it harder for users to follow Trump, essentially masking his tweets that it says would break its rules by replacing them with a warning message:
The march towards Big Tech authoritarianism continues.