Tuesday, January 31, 2023

YouTube is the only one of the major social media services to keep Trump’s account open

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There is one obstacle to the quick succession of social media companies banning President Trump: YouTube.

Trump’s account on the video streaming service remains available after Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat banned it following the Capitol riots.

On Trump’s account, visitors can find Fox News clips in which he, Donald Trump Jr. and Lara Trump pissed off supporters of the rally, critics said, incited a riot.

YouTube explained its decision to keep Trump’s account active by stating that it had a three-warning policy, which permanently kicks off users who violate the service’s policies within 90 days. But Trump has not received a strike in the past 90 days, the company said.

One strike results in a one-week suspension for users, while two strikes come with a three-week ban.

“Our three-warning system clearly outlines the penalty for violating our policies, from temporary uploading or live-streaming restrictions to account termination for channels that receive three warnings in the same 90-day period. days, “said Alex Joseph, a spokesperson for YouTube. by e-mail to Fortune. “We apply them consistently, regardless of who owns the channel.”

Last week, YouTube removed one of Trump’s videos in which he said he understood the rioters’ motives – all false – about the rigging of the presidential election results. He also called the rioters “special” and said “we love you”. But it didn’t count as a strike, as YouTube’s election disinformation policy updated on December 9 was accompanied by a grace period, the company said. This grace period ended on Thursday, the day after Trump’s video was deleted from YouTube.

Last week, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and the video streaming service Twitch and others bans Trump “indefinitely” for violating policies against incitement to violence. The companies say the threat of incitement to hatred is still too great to allow Trump to stay on their services.

In response, many of Trump’s supporters have flocked to other social media sites that are more lax when it comes to police posts, including the conservative social media site Speak. But Parler has since been closed after Google Play and The Apple App Store has discontinued the Talking app, saying that violent language was rampant in the service, and after Amazon’s web services unit discontinued hosting of its data.

Last week, former Trump sidekick Steve Bannon got his third and final hit on YouTube, which led to his popular “War Room” podcast being permanently banned. Bannon had previously called the chiefs of Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading epidemiologist, and FBI Director Chris Wray, in addition to repeating unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud.

Trump is not using YouTube to speak directly to his followers like he has on Twitter and Facebook. His YouTube channel consists primarily of news clips from Fox News and C-Span, in which pro-Trump Republicans and White House spokespersons are voicing their support.

Trump’s YouTube page also has recent videos he recorded, including the speech in which he said he would ensure a smooth transition to the Biden administration. In addition, the channel also includes videos from the far-right news organization One America News Network, one of which claims to prove voter fraud (it does not).

On Monday, celebrities including actors Sacha Baron Cohen and Mark Ruffalo called on YouTube to join other social media services and ban Trump.

“Virtually every social media company has deleted Trump… EXCEPT YouTube,” Baron Cohen tweeted. “Trump’s YouTube channel is ALWAYS showing videos of his election lies to MILLIONS!”

More to read absolutely technological coverage of Fortune:


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