By Jo Nova
If only they had overwhelming evidence they could post YouTubes that were popular
As Steve Milloy says “Not only are we winning the debate… we are forcing our opponents to show who the actual would-be-dictators are. “
Here’s Dem Kathy Castor writing to the YouTube CEO to ask him to stop YouTube suggesting skeptical videos as “up next” or earning advertising money.
To Sundar Pichai,
CEO, Google, CA
As we all work together to solve this crisis [climate change], we must also eliminate barriers to action, including those as pervasive and harmful as climate denial and climate misinformation.
- That’s why I urge you to ensure that Youtube is not incentivising video’s by removing them immediately from the platform’s recommended algorithm;
- Add “climate misinformation to the platforms list of borderline content;
- Stop monetising video’s that promote harmful misinformation and falsehoods about the causes and effects of the climate crisis;
- Take steps to correct the record for millions of users who have been exposed to climate misinformation on YouTube.
Please respond by Friday February 7, to describe any efforts you plan to take in order to address these important issues.
Chair, Kathy Castor
US House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis
Where did Ms Castor get this idea from?
AVAAZ a couple of weeks ago:
Ciara Nugent, Time Magazine
YouTube has been “actively promoting” videos containing misinformation about climate change, a report released Thursday by campaign group Avaaz claims, despite recent policy changes by the platform intended to drive users away from harmful content and conspiracy theories.
Avaaz examined 5,537 videos retrieved by the search terms “climate change,” global warming” and “climate manipulation,” and then the videos most likely to be suggested next by YouTube’s “up next” sidebar. For each of those search terms respectively, 8%, 16% and 21% of the top 100 related videos included by YouTube in the “up-next” feature contained information that goes against the scientific consensus on climate change – such as denying climate change is taking place, or claiming that human activity is not a cause of climate change. Avaaz claims this promotion process means YouTube is helping to spread climate denialism.
Avaaz has a project page Why is YouTube Broadcasting Climate Misinformation to Millions? On it the very first example they give is the tragedy of Professor Richard Lindzen getting 1.9 million views. Obviously, the MIT professor of atmospheric physics should not be allowed to run amok on Youtube. People might learn something.
Remember Stephan Lewandowsky – master of junk science, hidden data, dismal ethics – he’s still rooting for censors
Stephan Lewandowsky, chair of the cognitive psychology department at the University of Bristol, who studies climate misinformation… (and practises it himself) isn’t sure if YouTube has the political will to censor “for the climate” and mentions how it might be harder to block deniers while there are still politicians who aren’t reciting the permitted lines.
“With climate denial, even though it is a scientifically totally absurd position, there are plenty of politicians in the U.S. and Australia, for example, who are immersed in this stuff.”
Dang voters. Should we ban them too?
Youtube are being squeezed between a rock and a wall
Bullies demanding censorship can get what they want, either by leaning on Youtube, or on its advertisers.
Campaigns to scare off advertisers cost the company millions when Youtube clients pulled out of posting “ads near extremist content” in 2017. But if YouTube censors even more of the most popular controversial material, they risk losing everything. Bored audiences will head for competitors.
None of this would be possible if children were taught about free speech at school.