YouTube nonetheless pushing white supremacist movies: research


YouTube continues to push extremist movies, together with white supremacist content material, and different clips that might find yourself being a gateway to extremist content material for customers already prone to racial hatred, in line with a brand new report from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

YouTube says it has eliminated hundreds of extremist movies, however such content material continues to be circulating amongst a subset of extremely engaged customers encountering the movies by beneficial content material, the ADL mentioned within the report released Friday.

9 p.c of YouTube customers who participated within the ADL’s nationwide survey mentioned they had seen not less than one video from an extremist channel through the course of the research.


Moreover, 22 p.c mentioned they’d seen not less than one video from an “different channel,” which the ADL recognized in its report as presumably serving as a “gateway to extremist content material.”

The research recognized an inventory of 322 “different” channels, together with channels from conservative commentators, and 290 “extremist or white supremacist channels.”

Of the channels between the 2 lists, 515 have been nonetheless energetic as of Jan. 21. Among the many 97 channels not energetic, six have been encountered by contributors through the research and 91 have been taken down both earlier than the beginning of the research or earlier than Jan. 21.

YouTube defended its dealing with of extremist content material in an announcement responding to the report. 

“Now we have clear insurance policies that prohibit hate speech and harassment on YouTube, and terminated over 235,000 channels within the final quarter for violating these insurance policies,” the corporate mentioned in an announcement.


“Past eradicating content material, since 2019 we’ve additionally restricted the attain of content material that doesn’t violate our insurance policies however brushes up in opposition to the road, by ensuring our methods should not extensively recommending it to these not searching for it. We welcome extra analysis on this entrance, however views one of these content material will get from suggestions has dropped by over 70% within the US, and as different researchers have noted, our methods typically level to authoritative content material.”

ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt mentioned YouTube has not accomplished sufficient to sort out the widespread extremist content material.

“It’s far too simple for people fascinated by extremist content material to seek out what they’re searching for on YouTube again and again,” Greenblatt mentioned in an announcement.

“Tech platforms together with YouTube should take additional motion to make sure that extremist content material is scrubbed from their platforms, and if they don’t, then they need to be held accountable when their methods, constructed to interact customers, truly amplify harmful content material that results in violence,” he added.

The research discovered {that a}lmost all the 9 p.c of customers who watched a video from an extremist channel watched movies from different channels as effectively. These numbers have been pushed by a “small however extremely engaged subset” of customers with excessive consumption ranges, the report acknowledged.


The viewers for movies from the recognized channels is “dominated by individuals who have already got excessive ranges of racial resentment,” making up greater than 90 p.c of views for each varieties, in line with the report.

Whereas the suggestions to doubtlessly dangerous movies from different varieties are movies are “uncommon,” the suggestions of such content material are “incessantly” proven alongside movies from different or extremist channels, the ADL mentioned.

The report analyzed information from a pattern of 915 survey respondents between July and October and included browser historical past relationship again to April.

Democrats have been pushing for tech giants to ramp up efforts to take away extremist content material, particularly after the lethal Jan. 6 riot on the Capitol. Rep. Anna EshooAnna Georges EshooHillicon Valley: Robert F. Kennedy Jr. | YouTube study | Amazon lawsuit | Trump comments YouTube still pushing white supremacist videos: study Hillicon Valley: Ballots go out in Amazon union battle in Alabama | Hackers breach, attempt to poison Florida city’s water supply | Facebook to remove posts with false claims about vaccines MORE (D-Calif.) led dozens of Home Democrats in a letter to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki final month urging the platform, together with Twitter and Fb, to vary their algorithm that facilitates the unfold of extremist content material.

Eshoo mentioned the ADL report additional exhibits that YouTube wants to vary its algorithm and pushed for Congress to cross a invoice she launched with Rep. Tom MalinowskiThomas (Tom) MalinowskiYouTube still pushing white supremacist videos: study Lawmakers grill NSA on years-old breach in the wake of massive Russian hack Biden administration pauses UAE, Saudi arms sales amid broader review MORE (D-N.J.) designed to carry social media platforms extra accountable.

“The ADL launched a well-researched and troubling report displaying that white supremacy and extremist content material is proliferating on YouTube and that YouTube’s suggestion algorithms are pushing customers to extra excessive content material. These findings are damning. They make a crystal-clear case for why YouTube must rethink the core design of its product,” Eshoo mentioned in an announcement.

Up to date at 1:09 p.m.