YouTube is no stranger to temporarily banning media outlets for spreading COVID-19 misinformation, but its latest crackdown might be its largest yet. The Guardian and BBC News claim that Sky News Australia has been banned from uploading any new videos over allegations it is spreading COVID-19 misinformation. Multiple Sky videos were reportedly found to have violated the rules that denied the existence of the coronavirus and claimed that hydroxychloroquine or ivermectin are effective treatment.
YouTube stated that the clips did not provide enough context to prove false claims. The Guardian. YouTube stated that these videos could cause “real-world damage.” Sky was not the only one to be “struck” — there would be two others that could lead to permanent channel bans.
Sky claimed it discovered older YouTube videos, but denied claims that its hosts had discredited COVID-19. Although YouTube is known for focusing on facts and not opinions, the digital editor at Sky claimed that YouTube threatened free thought.
The host Alan Jones has been critical of the TV network’s stance regarding COVID-19. In July, Jones falsely stated that SARS-CoV-2 was not a pandemic in 2020 and incorrectly said that the Delta virus of the virus is neither deadly nor susceptible to vaccines. Sky apologized on July 19, and removed the video.
Sky Australia’s revenue will not be significantly affected by the suspension. YouTube is not likely to launch such an action against major media networks, however. This sends out a message that large media outlets cannot count on YouTube to protect them from YouTube crackdowns.
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Publiated at Sun, 01 August 2021 21:45.43 +0000