YouTube Sorry For Being Idiot, Decides Right Wing Watch OK After All
Yesterday afternoon, Wonkette brought you the important story of Greg Locke, the right-wing nutso pastor who revealed to the world that there are child-trafficking tunnels underneath the White House and also in the "five fingered lakes," where Joe Biden and Oprah and Tom Hanks and the pope stash children, saying that if you don't believe that, then you're no better than Hunter Biden! Locke is, of course, one of the many batshit right-wing figures monitored by those who do the yeoman's work of monitoring those idiots at Right Wing Watch.
At the time of that publishing, Right Wing Watch had been perma-banned from YouTube and had thousands of its videos deleted, we guess because whatever non-human AI YouTube uses to monitor hate speech had incorrectly flagged Right Wing Watch as a purveyor of that nonsense, instead of as the one that exposes it. (You can tell by the disclaimer they put at the front of EVERY VIDEO THEY MAKE.) They appealed their decision. YouTube rejected their appeal.
But we guess shining some sunlight on the problem has fixed it, because YouTube is now saying OOPS.
Good News: YouTube has restored our account. https://t.co/KXkglJVdTO https://t.co/eIpca2oltU https://t.co/T6PtFbz3I3— Right Wing Watch (@Right Wing Watch)1624913766.0
Sometimes they make mistakes! Or rather, we are guessing, sometimes they finally get an actual human being to review cases, instead of computers. That helps sometimes.
The Daily Beast has more:
"Right Wing Watch's YouTube channel was mistakenly suspended, but upon further review, has now been reinstated," a YouTube spokesperson told The Daily Beast on Monday afternoon. The social-media site also suggested that the issue was a mistake due to high volume of content and that they attempted to move quickly to undo the ban.
Right Wing Watch director Adele Stan also commented to the Beast:
"We are glad that by reinstating our account, YouTube recognizes our position that there is a world of difference between reporting on offensive activities and committing them," Right Wing Watch director Adele Stan said in a statement after the reinstatement. "Without the ability to accurately portray dangerous behavior, meaningful journalism and public education about that behavior would cease to exist."
Stan added, "We hope this is the end of a years-long struggle with YouTube to understand the nature of our work. We also hope the platform will become more transparent about the process it uses to determine whether a user has violated its rules, which has always been opaque and has led to frustrating and inexplicable decisions and reversals such as the one we experienced today. We remain dedicated to exposing threatening and harmful activities on the Far Right and we are glad to have YouTube again available to us to continue our work."
We've all seen this happen, and not just on YouTube. We've seen people who educate about and expose Nazis banned from Twitter because they used the cover of the book they wrote about alt-right Klan Nazis as their profile picture. (Remember that with Dave Neiwert?)
And apparently this, as Stan says above, and as Right Wing Watch senior fellow Kyle Mantyla also tells the Beast, is a "years-long" and "ongoing" problem with YouTube.
We don't have some grand conclusion here except to say Jesus, tech nerds, get your shit together. Maybe algorithms can't do everything.
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