BCM332 Case study 1

Internet censorship – YouTube

As the Internet becomes more and more commonly used by the public, almost everyone nowadays is available to reach the information all over the world. This is very convenient to most of us. However at the same time, there are a lot of different kinds of information was uploaded and shared on the internet, but not all of those are suitable for all kinds of people to visit. Hence Internet censorship exists.

Internet censorship limits what information can be published or viewed on the Internet and what cannot. Governments and other organizations often use Internet censorship to block access to copyright information and harmful or sensitive content. At first, it was used only by the Internet community rather than governments or official organizations in order not to get the government to obstruct freedom of speech. It was only used to protect some people out of some information that is harmful to them. But that line of what is harmful and what is not is sometimes very blurry and hard to define.

Well, there is a very popular website that most of the people like to visit. It is called YouTube. It is considered to be a place where everyone is equal. Everyone can watch the other’s videos and upload their own videos. Even the website itself stated that “Our mission is to give everyone a voice and to show them the world. We believe that everyone deserves to have a voice, and that the world is a better place when we listen, share and build a community through our stories.” But is that really what they do?

In about half a year, Youtube has announced that they are demonetizing videos from small channels, Which means that any of the videos they post will not be able to get advertisement and therefore will not have profit(Pringle2016). Also, the video will not be seen by the viewers who are on restricted mode, which is supposed to only filter the videos that have inappropriate content. It is very unfair to those creators as it makes their videos even harder to be seen by the public and also harder for the creators to build up their channels.

Demonetizing videos are supposed to be good for the viewers and the advertisers, where it can protect young viewers from seeing something they should not see and protect the advertisers that their products will not be promoted together with some inappropriate content. Demonetizing videos from small channels are not helping but also taking away the chance of the new creators to be seen by the viewers when their videos are not inappropriate for anything.

There are already records of youtube blocking and demonetizing videos that are not supposed to be blocked from people. Some music videos were blocked when some lyrics were misheard as bad language. In about a year ago youtube are demonetizing videos from LGBT creators just because they are LGBT related. Youtube has also blocked some videos for political reasons.

When they are blocking the videos that are not supposed to be blocked, Are they really protecting their customers? Or are they just doing things that are benefiting their own business?


Reference:

  1. YouTube, (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/intl/en-GB/yt/about/
  2. Cheong, I. M. (2018, January 17). YouTube Demonetizes Small Channels With New Partnership Policy. Retrieved from http://dailycaller.com/2018/01/17/youtube-demonetizes-small-channels-with-new-partnership-policy/
  3. Alexander, J. (2018, February 20). Lesser-known YouTubers band together on ‘Demonetization Day’. Retrieved from https://www.polygon.com/2018/2/20/17032900/demonetization-creators-youtube-subscribers-small-youtuber-army
  4. Pringle, R. (2016, September 12). ‘De-monetizing’ YouTube: What will you see? | CBC News. Retrieved from http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/youtube-advertising-demonetization-1.3755626
  5. Priddy, M. (2017, September 22). Why Is YouTube Demonetizing LGBTQ Videos? Retrieved from https://www.autostraddle.com/why-is-youtube-demonetizing-lgbtqia-videos-395058/
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4 thoughts on “BCM332 Case study 1

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  1. Youtube, as the largest video sharing platform, has the largest number of viewers and should be the most developed place for information exchange. Although censorship is supposed to exist to prevent underage viewers from reaching out to bad information, I think YouTube should not cut off the rights of other audiences to access information. I believe that many Youtube viewers can judge whether the information is good or bad without the need of YouTube censorship. In fact, as you mentioned, on one hand these reviews have affected the development of some less popular youtubers, and on the other hand have encouraged some people to use this function to vent personal dissatisfaction with the contents of the video. In my point of view, the censorship must exist undoubtedly, but under the premise that it will not hinder the flow of information,and it will not affect the right of people to receive information.

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  2. YouTube censorship is a big problem to all of us when we are all experiencing to sue the YouTube. It is a large community and connection between the public. However, I think the censorship is important for blocking the inappropriate content to the children of teenagers. But I think that everyone should enjoy their freedom of speech and publication. Which brings the most argue to the problem of YouTube censorship. Nowadays YouTUbe is narrowing down the freedom of speech in the political way which is harmful to our society as the largest platform of the vlogs.

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  3. Watching video on YouTube has been one of the popular entertainment for people, especially teenagers. When there is some free time, I always visit YouTube to find some video to watch. It seems that anyone can upload any video on it. However, I do not think that is true. When I want to find some music video, I cannot find it on YouTube but on another website sometimes. It seems that the videos are blocked because of the lyrics or the themes of the video. If it is really a platform for people to have a voice and share their ideas, they should solve this problem first.

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  4. Youtube is one of the famous social media in Hong Kong recent years, I love watching Youtube in my spare time too. There are many Youtubers produce a lot of interesting and unique videos to the public, some of their videos are related to a controversial topic. Take an example of a Youtuber Logan Paul share a vlog of suicide forest in Japan. In this video, you can see there is the dead appear in the video, it is not respected to the dead and the audience, the audience may think disgusted with this happen, In this case, Internet censorship places an important role on Youtube.

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