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YouTube backtracks on censorship of Illinois school board meeting over COVID comments

Public meetings on YouTube are still struggling

By Dan Frieth | Reclaim The Net | September 24, 2021

YouTube deleted videos of an Illinois school board meeting, allegedly over the violation of its strict COVID-19 rules.

The Springfield District Board said YouTube removed videos of a June 21 meeting over the violation of “medical misinformation policy, presumably due to the public comment portion.”

A parent in the school district, Ryan Jugan, said that his public comments on COVID-19 policies, made on the board’s meetings videos, had been censored by YouTube. In a statement to Cities929, Jugan said “as a parent [and] concerned citizen, witnessing censorship, suppression of medical professionals, science and data is appalling.”

The board’s president Anthony Mares said while the board welcomes public comments, it also has a desire for “public business we conduct at board meetings be widely available through YouTube.” For that reason, the board would “no longer include public comment in our YouTube meeting videos so that public business is available to distant families.”

The board’s spokesperson Bree Hankins said that they appealed the decision to delete the video, but YouTube declined.

“This counted as a warning, but further violations could result in an official strike and we would be unable to upload, post or live stream to YouTube for any purpose for at least one week upon another infraction,” Hankins said. “This has happened to other school districts in Illinois and elsewhere.”

“We never regained access to the removed video via YouTube,” Hankins said. “However, we do have the full versions of the board meeting video.”

Meanwhile, the board is exploring other alternatives where the public would be able to comment without censorship.

However, a spokesperson for YouTube confirmed that the video had been reinstated and the channel was not slapped with a strike.

“Upon further review, we’re reinstating the Springfield School District’s meeting video,” the spokesperson said in a statement to Reclaim The Net.

September 24, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | Leave a comment

YouTube deletes interview with congressman Thomas Massie

By Cindy Harper | Reclaim The Net | September 17, 2021

An episode on author and podcaster Tom Woods’ channel featuring Congressman Thomas Massie was deleted by YouTube. The Google-owned platform claimed that the video violated its community guidelines but did not specify which guidelines were violated other than that the video contained “medical misinformation.”

In the interview (uncensored on Odysee), Massie talked about ignoring the mask-wearing mandate in the House of Representatives.

He also asked: “If a vaccination mandate is immoral, is it moral to fake your vaccine card?”

However, he clarified that: “I’m not advocating. I’m asking the question.”

Massie is no stranger to censorship on Big Tech platforms. Just last month, Twitter quarantined a tweet from the congressman, preventing people from responding to and sharing it.

September 17, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | 2 Comments

Platforms censored posts saying Biden could introduce federal vaccine mandate as CDC’s own fact check denied it

By Cindy Harper | Reclaim The Net | September 12, 2021

During the last 18 months, social media platforms have often used the recommendations of the CDC as a basis of censorship online. The CDC’s own “Myths and Facts section explained clearly, and still does at the time of publication, that the federal government does not mandate vaccines and that it’s a matter for states and local governments.

Social media users who suggested that Biden was going to introduce a federal mandate were censored online and told they were providing misinformation, likely falling back on the fact that the CDC’s own statement on the issue (a go-to source for mainstream social media platforms) said it was false and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi had also made it clear that the federal government doesn’t have the power to exert such authority.

Back in July, Dave Rubin, an author and political commentator, was locked out of Twitter for saying the Biden administration wanted a federal vaccine mandate.

“They want a federal vaccine mandate for vaccines which are clearly not working as promised just weeks ago. People are getting and transmitting Covid despite vax. Plus now they’re prepping us for booster shots. A sane society would take a pause. We do not live in a sane society,” read his original tweet.

On Friday, he took to Twitter to remind people of his suspension for predicting something that was going to happen.

Alongside a screenshot of the original tweet, he wrote: “Reminder: Twitter banned me for saying they want a federal vaccine mandate back in July.”

He had to remove the tweet for his account to be restored.

Similarly, the popular YouTube commentary channel MrObvious, had a video removed by YouTube for making a similar statement; that Biden would federally mandate vaccines.

“About a week ago I made a video on YouTube about vaccine federal mandates and YouTube took down that video. I don’t know why – maybe they thought that I was simply – I don’t know – jumping the gun saying that Biden was going to do these federal mandates,” Mr Obvious said in a recent video. “Well guess what? Mr Obvious was in fact right.”

September 12, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

YouTube censors Gavin Newsom critic, Errol Webber

By Didi Rankovic | Reclaim The Net | August 26, 2021

California Governor Gavin Newsom, who is currently facing recall in his state and could realistically lose, is still popular among at least one “demographic” – YouTube censors, whether they’re automated or human.

At least that transpires now that Oscar winning filmmaker Errol Webber is facing what reports say is “double censors” because he’s really not fond of the Democrat’s track record in office.

Webber won his Oscar for “Music by Prudence” that deals with a singer with disabilities in Zimbabwe. Back in California, though, Webber decided to flex his apparently stellar documentary-making muscle by taking on a project under the title, “100 Reasons to Recall Gavin Newsom” that looks into all the things that Newsom did wrong during his three years in office, reports say.

This is where things came to a screeching halt, at least on YouTube, where the video got blocked and placed under a total of two warning labels.

In one screenshot shared by Webber, YouTube declared the Newsom era-exposing documentary as something that “may not be appropriate for some users” (true enough – especially when it comes to his hard-core political supporters, but why would YouTube care to appease those?).

Plus, YouTube sent Webber an email informing him that his content was not appropriate for all age groups.

So YouTube was “thinking of the children,” not “of the Democrats” here.

In any case, users can still see the video but only if they wish to proceed by clicking a button on an ominously back screen complete with a prominent exclamation mark seemingly demoting danger ahead.

The other labelled screen reads, (with another the big exclamation mark and a button that lets users “understand and proceed,” reading that, “the following content has been identified by the YouTube community as inappropriate and offensive to some audiences.”

One would be hard pressed to find a video on YouTube that doesn’t fall into this nebulous category of “offending” someone’s sensibilities; but for YouTube not all sensibilities are born equal.

The video showcasing Newsom’s term in office uses “authoritative” sources like CNN and AP to document all that’s gone wrong during the governor’s rule.

“I made sure that many of the sources for this video were left wing media, so if the fact checkers on YouTube and Facebook wanted to fact check me and discredit something they would be discrediting their own left wing media,” Webber said.

And despite the hurdles on its way, Webber’s content is still finding an audience on YouTube – until, that is, the giant fine-tweaks its censorship tools to downrank what it doesn’t like without necessarily removing it.

August 26, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

TubeShift makes it easy to find censored YouTube videos on Odysee, Rumble, BitChute and more

It also simplifies the process of staying up to date with creators on alternative platforms

By Tom Parker | Reclaim the Net | July 28, 2021

When YouTube censors videos, it also scrubs the video title and the name of the channel that uploaded the video from the page. All that remains is white space and a notice stating: “This video has been removed for violating YouTube’s terms of service.”

This means that if all you have is a link to a YouTube video that was censored before you had a chance to watch it, you can’t search for the video title or the creator on alternative platforms.

The open-source TubeShift browser extension fixes this problem by finding alternative versions of censored YouTube videos and making links to these alternative videos available to you with a single click.

In addition to helping you find censored videos, TubeShift also finds alternative versions of non-censored videos across a variety of platforms. So if you’re watching a video on YouTube, TubeShift will let you know if the video’s also available on BitChute, Odysee, and the other platforms it supports.

While TubeShift is great for finding alternative versions of YouTube videos, you can also use it to find alternatives while browsing the other supported sites. For example, if you’re on Odysee and want to see if the creator also uploads to Rumble, TubeShift will let you know with a single click.

Currently, TubeShift supports five video-sharing platforms – BitChute, Odysee, Rumble, YouTube, and Dailymotion. It also plans to add support for the free speech video sharing platform Gab TV after it makes a planned change to its website.

By default, the TubeShift extension will turn red and show a counter whenever alternative versions of the video you’ve opened are available. TubeShift will find these alternative versions for both censored and live videos. You can then click on the extension to display the links to these alternative versions.

TubeShift displaying links to alternative versions of a censored YouTube video

Continue

July 29, 2021 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Timeless or most popular, Video | | Leave a comment

North Carolina Henderson County Board of Commissioners look for new platform after YouTube censorship

By Didi Rankovic | Reclaim the Net | July 15, 2021

Once again YouTube has decided that it has the right to silence elected officials in the US in a bid to prevent them from making their policies and decisions known, particularly concerning COVID.

When North Carolina’ Henderson County Board of Commissioners met to discuss whether to spend taxpayer money to promote Covid vaccination, and decided against the idea, passing a relevant resolution, YouTube was quick to delete the video taken during the meeting.

The commissioners’ meeting and vote not to spend county dollars to push for people to get the jab was followed by citizens, vaccine skeptics, expressing their opinion on the issue by saying that they believed the inoculation project was put together by the government, the media, and pharmaceutical companies who have a “hidden agenda.”

The Google company also swiftly rejected the appeal filed by the commissioners, stating that the the content had been reviewed “carefully,” but that YouTube censors still found the video in violation of the medical misinformation policy.

Two days after this happened, the County held another vote and decided to remove YouTube as the video platform its officials use, and look for alternatives.

Vice chair Rebecca McCall and other commissioners called YouTube’s decision an act of censorship, and questioned whether such a widely used platform, even if privately owned, should be allowed to do that – or be the judge of what medical information is acceptable.

YouTube has a long list of things its users are not allowed to utter on the platform, often not even as part of a debate among scientists and doctors, as YouTube believes these things pose “a serious risk of egregious harm.”

This includes recommending Ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine for Covid treatment (even though critics of the use of these drugs speak about their inefficacy rather than potential harm), and making claims that Covid vaccines can make people ill. Contradicting local health authorities or the WHO is also prohibited, where it comes to treatment, prevention, transmission, or orders of restrictive measures such as mask wearing and social distancing.

July 15, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

YouTube censors Dr. Drew (again) for “medical misinformation”

By Didi Rankovic | Reclaim the Net | July 15, 2021

US physician and media personality Dr. Drew Pinsky is once again in trouble on YouTube, after one of his videos was removed for allegedly containing medical misinformation.

The video was an episode of one of Pinsky’s podcasts that featured Dr. Ram Yogendra, an anesthesiologist, and following this, he announced that YouTube handed his channel a “two week penalty.”

This is similar to what happened in February, when Pinsky told Dave Rubin of the Rubin Report that his YouTube channel had been “deplatformed” for a week, with a threat of permanent deplatforming.

He also shared at the time that he was unable to understand what the reasons behind YouTube’s actions were, but assumed they had to do with a discussion with another doctor of Covid topics such as immunity and controversies around different types of treatments of some complications brought on by the disease.

This time, Pinsky seems to have received a second strike against his channel within 90 days, leading to two weeks suspension, or, as he put it, “penalty.” A third strike within a given period would lead to the doctor’s permanent deplatforming.

This development seemed to have given Pinsky some show topic ideas, so he afterwards took to Twitter to announce an AMA session on Clubhouse, the topic being, “Big Tech vs. Free Speech: Ask Dr. Drew.”

Pinsky has a diversified presence on many platforms, including on Rumble, which he recently joined, and he urged his audience on Twitter to find links on his website to the video on other social media networks.

As for this latest example of YouTube’s censorship of his videos on the platform, Pinsky in one tweet thanked a commenter who said they listened to the whole podcast episode but were unable to determine what might have constituted for medical information – instead, it was “just talk about how discussion is being censored.”

But it would be much easier for YouTube to cite medical misinformation and call it a day, than to for once go into any meaningful detail in explaining why creators are punished and deplatformed.

July 15, 2021 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | | 1 Comment

YouTube censors New Jersey Senate hearing about kids’ mask mandates

By Didi Rankovic | Reclaim the Net | July 14, 2021

As YouTube continues to censor a wide array of topics, not least those around the Covid pandemic, so it’s independent competitors like Rumble continue to attract more creators.

The trend was unbroken last week when Google’s video giant censored a video showing a New Jersey Senate hearing on the topic of forcing school children to wear masks, which concluded the policy may be harmful.

New Jersey-based talk show host and former chair of the College Republican National Committee Bill Spadea announced this, accusing the Democratic majority in the state’s capital, Trenton, of shunning the official event, and YouTube of eventually “not liking” the content of the discussion, and for that reason removing the video.

However, as Spadea explained, the video can still be found on his new channel on Rumble.

Scientists, doctors, lawyers and senators who chose to participate were there to debate the validity of one of the more controversial topics relating to Covid mandates in the US – masking children.

Like most other rules around masks and their efficacy in preventing infection, these have been changing over the past 18 months – but the consensus seems to be that children are least at risk of contracting and spreading the virus.

However, YouTube’s pro-masking, pro-distancing censorship algorithms aren’t very sophisticated so it appears that even to this day, even a discussion of the issue, let alone directly opposing the policy of masking children, will get content banned – even if the source is an official gathering of experts and lawmakers.

Spadea himself has little doubt that masks should not be mandated, because after covering the topic for over a year, he sees no proof that masks protect children.

This, however, runs contrary to what the US political and medical establishment thinks, and those doctors and scientists who disagree with official narratives and are willing to speak their mind are also often getting censored by Big Tech – the New Jersey Senate hearing, that concluded forcing children to wear masks could be dangerous, being no different.

Spadea blasted these acts of suppression of information as “the aggressive and immoral efforts of the social media oligarchs,” at the same time referring to Rumble as “a sliver of free speech” left out there.

July 14, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | Leave a comment

YouTube censors public Lake Forest School District board meeting where parents opposed mask mandates

By Tom Parker | Reclaim the Net | July 13, 2021

YouTube has scrubbed a public Lake Forest High School District 115 board meeting from its platform after numerous parents at the meeting spoke out against required masking.

Ben Bradley, a news anchor and investigative reporter for WGN TV News, tweeted: Our understanding is that people reported the content to youtube as a violation of its terms, which triggered the removal while youtube reviews.”

Twitter user Harriet Smith Martin said “numerous parents spoke against required masking” at the meeting and added that the video was removed before she had finished listening to it.

“The video was up as of 10:30 or so last night (I was watching it.),” she tweeted. “When I went back to finish listening this morning, it was gone.”

Under its far-reaching “medical misinformation” policy, YouTube prohibits a wide range of claims about masks including claims that “wearing a mask is dangerous or causes negative physical health effects,” that “wearing a mask causes oxygen levels to drop to dangerous levels,” or that “masks do not play a role in preventing the contraction or transmission of COVID-19.”

As a result of this policy, numerous public debates and meetings on mask mandates have been censored by the tech giant.

In May, a public Shawnee Mission School District board meeting was removed under similar circumstances. The meeting was open to public comment and parents urged the district to remove mask mandates. YouTube flagged these comments as “misinformation” and removed the video.

A few days after this video was removed, YouTube deleted a Georgia mom’s testimony against mask mandates during a school board meeting. YouTube again claimed that the video violated its medical misinformation rules.

July 14, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , | Leave a comment

Video producer Matt Orfalea censored again for calling out YouTube censorship

By Tom Parker | Reclaim the Net | July 13, 2021

After he published a video discussing YouTube’s censorship last month, video producer Matt Orfalea was censored and had his channel demonetized. Now, YouTube has targeted Orfalea once again and removed another video where he and his guest, independent journalist Alison Morrow, called out the tech giant’s censorship.

In the video, which is titled “YouTube BANS Reporter Exposing YouTube HYPOCRISY,” Orfalea and Morrow recapped the escalating YouTube censorship they have both faced.

This censorship began in June when Orfalea’s YouTube channel was suspended for uploading what he described as “unpublished rough cuts” of a video highlighting YouTube’s censorship of ivermectin.

Orfalea was then demonetized in July after YouTube flagged a seven year old, 13 second parody video for allegedly violating its “violent criminal organizations” policy. After facing backlash, YouTube admitted “error” but did not re-monetize his videos.

A few days after Orfalea was demonetized, he was a guest on Morrow’s channel in a video where she highlighted how mainstream media outlets are allowed to violate YouTube’s “medical misinformation” policy without facing sanctions. This video was censored and then reinstated after YouTube faced pushback for taking it down.

In the “YouTube BANS Reporter Exposing YouTube HYPOCRISY” video, Morrow suggested that her video may have been removed because of Orfalea’s guest appearance and speculated that YouTube’s artificial intelligence (AI) could be flagging people that have previously been sanctioned by YouTube and then censoring videos from other creators that associate with those that have been flagged.

“This is just a perfect example of what’s happening now,” Orfalea added. “Where we have this caste system, this blatant double standard… so clearly, as you’ve described, this is not about protecting viewers from misinformation, this is about allowing, you know, some privileged class of journalists… corporate media and allow them to say things without being challenged.”

Shortly after Orfalea posted this video where he and Morrow criticized YouTube for its censorship, YouTube took it down for allegedly violating the platform’s “medical misinformation” rules.

Orfalea appealed but YouTube rejected the appeal and told him: “We reviewed your content carefully, and have confirmed that it violates our medical misinformation policy.”

“I’ve been dealing with this insanity for almost a full month now,” Orfalea said after YouTube rejected his appeal. “YT reinstated Alison’s video. So they should reinstate my video, referencing hers, too!”

YouTube’s consistent targeting of Orfalea is reflective of the double standard on YouTube between independent creators and mainstream media outlets that he called out in this now-censored video.

Independent creators are 20x less likely to top coronavirus search results14x less likely to be recommended on election related content, and 10x less likely to top search results for some other newsworthy events.

YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki has also admitted that the platform’s recommendation algorithm was changed in response to the media’s radicalization theory and said the platform won’t recommend YouTubers for breaking news.

Related: 🛡 Big Tech’s double standard on “conspiracy theories” when they come from mainstream media

July 14, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 3 Comments

YouTube deletes channel of Spain’s political party, VOX

Deleted with no recourse

By Didi Rankovic | Reclaim the Net | July 12, 2021

YouTube has deplatformed Spain’s fast-rising conservatives gathered around VOX, currently the second-largest opposition party in the country’s parliament.

A notice on the party’s now-deleted channel reads that it was terminated over multiple copyright infringement claims.

The videos in question have been backed up on AltCensored, a platform set up to keep record of content deleted by YouTube or self-censored on the platform.

Often branded in mainstream Western media as an “extreme-right” and an “Islamophobic” party, VOX earlier this year gained more ground with a strong showing in regional elections in Catalonia, where they took the role of conservative leaders it the local parliament.

VOX, on the other hand, maintains that its goal is to defend Spanish values and way of life, advocate for a smaller state apparatus, and protect privacy from government intrusion.

However, YouTube’s termination notice doesn’t mention any content contentious per se, but rather unspecified alleged copyright infringement. While it isn’t clear what the exact reason for the deletion of the YouTube channel is, it isn’t uncommon for the giant’s copyright rules to be abused as a way to achieve unrelated goals.

False copyright claims can be used for anything from unmasking identities, extorting money, to simply blocking content somebody doesn’t like.

Until the mystery of what exactly prompted YouTube to kick VOX off the platform, what’s certain is that this isn’t the first time the party has had trouble on Big Tech owned social media. In May, Francisco Jose Contreras, a VOX MP, got locked out of Twitter for stating that “a man cannot get pregnant.”

The temporary ban came after Contreras shared a link to a story about a man who had “given birth to his child.”

“That’s a lie. A man cannot get pregnant. A man has neither uterus nor ovaries,” Contreras commented at the time. Twitter then suspended him for spreading “hatred.”

July 12, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties | | Leave a comment

YouTube suspends Right Side Broadcasting network prior to Trump rally

By Christina Maas | Reclaim the Net | July 3, 2021

Right Side Broadcasting Network has been announced that it has been banned from broadcasting on YouTube for seven days, just hours before a Trump rally that it planned to cover.

Also, many of the channel’s videos of President Donald Trump’s events and rallies have been deleted from its popular channel.

YouTube deleted videos that had several million views.

Footage of Trump at the first “Save America” rally in Ohio last week was deleted, as well as footage of his speech at the North Carolina GOP Convention.

YouTube says the videos violate its “Community Guidelines” of “spam, deceptive practices and scams,” an increasingly given reason when videos are deleted on the platform these days.

RSBN will be using its own app and Rumble to broadcast the July 3rd rally.

RSBN was founded in 2015 by Joe Seales. The conservative media company rose in popularity for live streaming Trump’s rallies on YouTube. The over 3,000 videos on RSBN’s YouTube channel have millions of views.

July 3, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment