YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki told CNN any coronavirus-related content that goes against recommendations from the World Health Organization will be removed from the platform.
In an interview with CNN’s Brian Stelter, Wojcicki described the aggressive measures YouTube is taking to combat what it perceives to be misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic.
“And so we talk about that as raising authoritative information,” Wojcicki said, referring to an increase in news consumption on the site. “But then we also talk about removing information that is problematic, you know. Of course, anything that is medically unsubstantiated. So people saying, like, take vitamin C, you know, take turmeric, like, those are—will cure you. Those are the examples of things that would be a violation of our policy. Anything that would go against World Health Organization recommendations would be a violation of our policy. And so remove is another really important part of our policy.”
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcocki says users are using the platform during the coronavirus crisis.
It started with basic information but now users “want to know about life under quarantine… like exercise at home. How do I fix my freezer? How do I give myself a haircut.” pic.twitter.com/p8jxTUBRte
— Reliable Sources (@ReliableSources) April 19, 2020
Videos of people touting hydroxychloroquine as an effective treatment for COVID-19 are also subject to removal. The anti-malarial drug has shown promise in some patients but is not clinically proven to be a consistently effective treatment.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who had COVID-19, reportedly promoted the drug as an effective treatment and downplayed the need for social distancing in a since-removed video.
Wojcicki’s standard for removing videos is more strict than the standard previously established by YouTube in a statement, when it said it would remove “any content that disputes the existence or transmission of Covid-19, as described by the WHO [World Health Organization] and local health authorities.”
That guideline specifically mentioned videos that claim the coronavirus is caused by 5G.
President Donald Trump announced last week that the U.S. would halt funding to the WHO pending a review of its role in covering up the spread of COVID-19.
(H/T: The Daily Wire)
Author: Aaron Colen