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YouTube Censorship and Government Pressure

Activist Post had a YouTube channel. YouTube closed it down without warning. YouTube’s enhanced censorship was heralded in early September.

Activist Post still has its web site, of course.

The Activist Post videos can be accessed in new places now, because the internet remains open to entry and competition. I can’t see that these videos in any way violated YouTube guidelines. YouTube’s censorship appears to me to be purely due to political and social differences in positions between YouTube’s powers and Activist Post.

The Activist Post byline is “Propaganda for peace, love and liberty”. On Oct. 7, 2017, it interviewed Dr. Ron Paul in a video.

An interview with co-founder Michael Edwards in 2014 explains the philosophy of Activist Post. There is nothing in it that I can see violates YouTube guidelines.

This action by YouTube is part of a relatively recent wave of censorship imposed by companies called social media companies. Government is behind it:

“The government has held multiple closed door meetings with social media executives and has suggested that services take steps to create government-friendly content, monitor activity, and even tweak algorithms to change the availability of certain posts and users. As we wrote earlier this year, social media companies should decline such invitations to join the national security state.

“At the same time, the social media companies provide little to no transparency about how often they take down content for violations of the rules in their own terms of service, which are prone to enforcement errors and abuse. Such rules typically restrict speech on the platforms in ways that go beyond what the government can restrict under the First Amendment. That raises questions about whether the government may be using the rules to pressure companies to take down content that the government itself could not.”

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5:57 pm on October 27, 2017