Sunday, April 30, 2017

Extra Credit- Youtube Censoring

YouTube is a social media platform that a lot of young people go to for various reasons.  Some may go on for makeup/hair tutorials, video gaming, travel videos, vloggers, and even advice from those they look up to.  If you have ever seen videos where YouTuber’s do meet and greets, the fans look up to them like any major celebrity.  You are able to look in at people’s lives in the most recent form that is available considering you can also do live streaming.  Youth tend to be very vulnerable and are more susceptible to be effected by their role models.  This is not a bad thing as many of the big YouTube people are very open about gearing toward a specific audience.  Many YouTuber’s refuse to let cursing in their videos because they are aware their audience is younger.  There are also YouTuber’s who are very explicit but often their titles of their videos and their image alone are known to be this way.  The main thing I am trying to say is that you aren’t likely to click on a video and all of a sudden see things or hear things you never thought you would prior to clicking. 
            Recent issues of YouTube censoring what people can do have been occurring for a while.  The changes would mainly effect if you were able to monetize your videos, which is a big deal if YouTube is your only income.  The most recent censoring has angered a lot of people because it has come as a personal threat.  The LGBTQ+ community has seen some of their videos not being allowed in a feature that is called “restricted mode”.  It is meant for people who do not want to see inappropriate themed videos whether it’s swearing or the topic being discussed.  Many of those in the community have said that titles discussing same sex relationships are not included in the restricted mode.  They also state that they never discuss anything that is wrong or say any inappropriate language.  YouTube came and said, “LGBTQ+ videos are available in restricted mode, but videos that discuss more sensitive issues may not be” according to abcnews.  Of course this brings up the issue that they are even censoring people at all and something as vague as “more sensitive issues” is upsetting to a lot of people.  It creates a discussion of is YouTube censoring same sex and transgender subjects just because it offends parents?  Why is it LGBTQ+ experiencing this and not heterosexual people?  There are so many things wrong with this ethically that is just down right upsetting.

            In class we talked a lot about censoring and algorithms, which I think this topic, is conclusive to that.  That means that if we turn on a switch we can completely pretend transgender, racial issues, and same sex relationships aren’t just as important as anything else we see?  You can’t create an algorithm in your website that completely doesn’t include a certain type of person because its “too sensitive”.


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