A group of fact-checking organizations worldwide has sent a signed letter to YouTube, accusing the service of not taking effective steps to stop misinformation on its platform.
The latter states that YouTube allows itself to be weaponized by unscrupulous actors who share manipulative information for various causes. Thus, they now ask YouTube to make suitable changes to operate better accordingly.
A Letter of Accusation to YouTube
This week, a letter signed by more than 80 fact-checking organizations from over 40 countries was sent to YouTube’s CEO, Susan Wojcicki, who blamed the video-sharing platform for not effectively controlling the spread of misinformation and disinformation on its platform.
While misinformation is false information that’s not actually intended to cause harm, disinformation, on the other hand, is also some kind of false information intended to cause harm. And the fact-checking organizations like Full Fact from the UK, Washington Post Fact Checker, Spain’s Maldita, India Today have written;
“YouTube is allowing its platform to be weaponised by unscrupulous actors to manipulate and exploit others, and to organise and fundraise themselves. Current measures are proving insufficient.”
They started this by calling YouTube a “major conduit” for falsehoods and urged the platform to make below four changes;
- Stopping its algorithms from promoting repeat offenders,
- Providing links to report a video inside it, that is distributing misinformation or disinformation,
- A commitment to fund independent research bodies working on disinformation campaigns on the platform, and
- Doing more to tackle falsehoods in non-English-language videos.
While YouTube has yet to implement all these measures, its spokesperson, Elena Hernandez, replied to this letter saying they have invested heavily in various products and policies that connect people to “authoritative content, reduce the spread of borderline misinformation, and remove violative videos.” Yet, the misinformation prevails.