Over 2500 China linked YouTube channels taken down by Google for disinformation!
YouTube is a video platform from Google, which allows people to post videos related to any field and many people use it productively! However, it looks like there are a few miscreants who are using this to spread misinformation and for illegal purposes. Now, Alphabet Inc. the parent company of Google and thereby YouTube has decided to take strict action against such miscreants! A recent bulletin from Google says that it has taken down over 2500 YouTube channels linked to China, as part of its ongoing efforts to remove disinformation being spread on their video platform! A statement issued from Google reveals that these channels were removed between April and June "as part of our ongoing investigation into coordinated influence operations linked to China!"
Disinformation campaigns spread from foreign sources have been a major headache for politicians and technologists in America, since the 2016 Presidential election which saw Donald Trump assume power! There were a lot of allegations that Russian-government linked actors had posted hundreds of millions of cryptic and deceptive messages on social media, to influence the outcome of the US Presidential elections! Ever since, many companies including Facebook and Google have been working hard to avoid a repeat of the 2016 scenario. They have also been posting regular updates on how they are working towards combating such targeted online propaganda! This information regarding the China linked YouTube channels was given out by Google in a quarterly bulletin on disinformation activities and it also included mentions about other countries like Iran and Russia!
Despite giving out the information of having taken down 2500 plus channels, Google did not mention any specific names nor did they provide any other details. The bulletin however mentioned that these channels had generally posted "spammy non-political video content" with only a small subset touching upon politics! However, it also linked these videos to similar activities spotted by Twitter and another disinformation campaign identified by social media analytics company Graphika, in April! Also, it is being reported that the Chinese Embassy in the US has not released any comment in this regard yet but Beijing has repeatedly denied allegations of initiating the spread of any disinformation, a number of times in the past! Stay tuned for updates...