Factual Feminist, PragerU YouTube Videos Get Labeled As Objectionable By YouTube

There have been reports surfacing that various videos from certain YouTube outlets are being hidden from the public view under the label of being “objectionable”. This label applies to content that is literally censored from any playlists, search results or video listings under YouTube’s Restricted Mode. Two YouTube outlets have caused quite the stir for having many of their educational videos labeled as “Objectionable Content”.

The Restricted Mode is YouTube’s way of auto-filtering content, and as the image below shows, it will automatically de-list videos from showing up.

PragerU is an outlet that provides news and information about global topics, sociology, institutional issues, religious content and politics. According to The Daily Signal, 21 of PragerU’s videos have been labeled as “Objectionable Content”.

So far, the sites reporting on the censorship don’t seem to have any comments from YouTube on the matter, and the video site has been silent about it so far.

According to the Washington Examiner the PragerU group has started a petition to vie for YouTube to remove the label of “Objectionable Content” from their videos. According to the PragerU website, they’ve managed to acquire more than 57,000 signatures as of the writing of this article.

PragerU does state that Google responded to them when they filed a complaint about the matter, and they write…

“In response to an official complaint we filed, Google specialists defended their restriction of our videos, and said, “We don’t censor anyone”, although they do “take into consideration what the intent of the video is” and “what the focus of the video is.””

Essentially Google is telling them that the “intent” or “focus” of a video is enough to have it labeled as “Objectionable”. This isn’t too surprising when you consider that Google/YouTube have been demonetizing videos based on headlines, tags and content, which was evident when they selectively demonetized certain videos containing content critical of Hillary Clinton and SJWs but left alone videos critical of Donald Trump.

PragerU asked the same thing in a tweet, where they pointed out that other similar videos by another YouTube creator, Vox, were not listed as “Objectionable”.

Some users pointed out that it’s likely that groups of people are mass-reporting videos to have them labeled as “Objectionable” so that people with Restricted Mode on will never see the videos, which would likely apply to family computers, libraries, public places with internet access, work computers, schools or other educational institutions. This mass-flagging is also one of the tools at the disposal of high-level YouTube Heroes.

This issue also affected Christina Hoff Sommers from the American Enterprise Institute, whose Factual Feminist videos were also hit.

Basically, if videos are labeled as “Objectionable”, they won’t be appearing in the feeds of anyone who has Restricted Mode turned on. Using this method to mass flag certain ideological videos that groups of people don’t agree with is a quick way to turn YouTube into an intersection of demarcated ideas and information, restricted and confined from being easily accessed by the general public.