Earlier this week, the visual media platform YouTube announced that it will start removing new content that claims widespread voter fraud or errors changed the outcome of the US presidential elections.
On Wednesday, the Google-owned video service said that the move is consistent with the platform’s policy and how it has dealt with past elections. YouTube said enough states had certified their results to determine Joe Biden as the winner.
However, this is the first move Youtube has made to reduce misinformation about the US elections and is facing some criticism for that. Democrats have criticised YouTube for not doing enough to take down fake news and conspiracy theories on the platform during the election, which impacts voting choices.
Unlike Twitter and Facebook, which put measures in place — with some success —- YouTube had until Wednesday stood by its decision to allow factually incorrect claims about election fraud to stay up.
As of now, most states have verified their results and there is no evidence of widespread fraud in the 2020 US election. Election officials confirmed there were no serious irregularities and the election went well.
The US Attorney General William Barr said last week the Justice Department has not identified voter fraud that would change the presidential election.
A press-release by Associated Press states that “conservative news sites and YouTube accounts have been instrumental in spreading these claims”.
YouTube said it is trying to strike a balance between “allowing for a broad range of political speech and making sure our platform isn’t abused to incite real-world harm or broadly spread harmful misinformation.”