YouTube Deletes Russian Broadcaster’s Channels Over COVID-19 Misinformation

YouTube deleted Russian state-backed broadcaster RT’s German-language channels on Tuesday, saying it had breached its COVID misinformation policy.

YouTube has always had clear community guidelines that outline what is allowed on the platform,” said a spokesperson.

Initially RT’s German channel was issued a strike for uploading content that violated YouTube’s COVID misinformation policy, resulting in a suspension of posting rights on the platform for a week.

During that suspension, the Russian broadcaster tried to use another channel to circumvent the ban on uploading.

“As a result both channels were terminated for breaking YouTube Terms of Service,” said the spokesperson.

All videos uploaded to YouTube must comply with its guidelines which sets up the type of content allowed to be on the platform.

Facebook and Amazon earlier this month were asked to provide a more thorough explanation of their efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation by US lawmakers.

US technology companies have come under fire from the Biden administration and other critics for the alarming spread of vaccine misinformation that they say is slowing inoculation in the country and increasing hostility to vaccines.

Companies including Twitter and Alphabet’s Google as well as YouTube have also faced criticism in the past for allowing false information on COVID-19, including vaccines, to proliferate.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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