YouTube has decided to block all anti-vaccine content. Moving beyond COVID-19, the platform will ban all content that alleges vaccines cause chronic health effects or contains misinformation on the substances in vaccines, it said in a blog post on September 29.
The online video company owned by Alphabet Inc is also banning prominent anti-vaccine activists, taking down several channels, the Washington Post reported on September 29, citing YouTube’s Vice President Of Global Trust and Safety Matt Halprin. These include Robert F. Kennedy Jr and Joseph Mercola, who have long been high-profile figures in the anti-vaccine movement.
The move comes as YouTube and other tech giants like Facebook and Twitter have been criticised for not doing enough to stop the spread of false health information on their sites.
Even as YouTube takes a tougher stance on misinformation, it faces backlash around the world. On September 28, Russian state-backed broadcaster RT's German-language channels were deleted from YouTube, as the company said the channels had breached its COVID-19 misinformation policy.
Russia on September 29 called the move "unprecedented information aggression," and threatened to block YouTube.
(Edited by : Shoma Bhattacharjee)