YouTube using aggressive policies against misinformation spread by people regarding the coronavirus pandemic

With coronavirus continuing to spread and seeing no hopeful end anytime soon, many people have started creating numerous conspiracy theories, many of which are quite creative yet misleading. These theories have spread like wildfire on the internet, especially on popular social media apps. Most of them have caused a lot of people to believe in the false information that is being generated, which can be quite harmful and dangerous during the spread of a deadly virus. Much medical and government officials have called out people for spreading misinformation about the pandemic and have asked the social media platforms to control their content regarding the disease.

One of the social networks that have taken strict actions is YouTube. Famous for its video content generation, YouTube is the prime target of conspiracy theorists and other people who continue to spread misinformation about the pandemic. YouTube has continued to make their censorship policy stricter than before and has vowed to remove any user that makes false content and uploads it to the platform.

The app has received an immense amount of pressure from both media and politicians, which has led it to take damage control measures, costing millions of dollars and a lot of time. Although officials were reluctant to intervene in the policies set by the social media platform, they had to interfere to calm down the chaotic situation caused by the majority of the media sources. However, YouTube is not against the policies and have cooperated very well, employing their choice of control and censorship policies and techniques to lower the content that spreads misinformation and invalid information about coronavirus.

To combat the content, YouTube has allocated AI systems that screen the video content posted online for any corona virus-related titles, keywords, or hashtags. Furthermore, they have assigned certain people as “raters” to rate the content being generated, to easily catch anything posted online related to false information.

YouTube’s Chief Product Officer Mohan stated that the company is even screening officials and government administrators for the content that they are posting regarding the pandemic. The social media company has taken up the responsibility to apply the policies equally to all users and influencers, so there is absolutely no margin for error.

Moreover, the video hosting giant has designed and updated its algorithm in a way that all users searching for information regarding coronavirus will be redirected to and see a lot of content from trusted sources, such as the World Health Organization, etc. This step has driven a lot of traffic towards the trusted sources, rather than those that spread rumors. The rather aggressive policy steps taken by the app cum website has significantly reduced the wave of misinformation that was being spread from the social media platform.

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