YouTube took down 8.3 million videos in the last three months of the year 2017. The video-sharing site has faced a lot of criticism that it is not reacting enough to the inappropriate content. Responding to this criticism, YouTube took this step to remove inappropriate contents. The company revealed in its first quarterly moderation report that most of those videos were attempts to upload adult content or spam. Also, 80 percent of the videos were removed after they were identified by machines rather than humans. So, this highlights the growth of the company in machine learning which removes content that violates policies of the site. According to the blog post by the company, they have invested in machine learning to help speed up removals of the inappropriate content which are something like spam or violent extremism. They have also hired full-time specialists having expertise in human rights, violent extremism, and counter-terrorism, and have expanded their regional expert teams. So, the company seems to be concerned towards their policies.
According to the blog post made by the YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, Google would increase the number of content moderators and other employees to more than 10,000 for reviewing content and training algorithms in 2018.
Mass Advertising Boycott
Many companies pulled out ads from YouTube as Google was not able to ensure that ads won’t appear next to offensive and hateful content. Many videos that are centered around homophobic, racist, and anti-semitic views were found with ads from brands like Amazon, Coca-Cola, and Microsoft. So, after these reports, mass advertising boycotts were found in UK and then US. This made YouTube to bring some changes and a better moderation.
In the wake of this boycott, YouTube suspended hundreds of accounts, removed more than 150,000 videos from the platform, and turned off the comments for more than 625,000 videos that seemed to be targeted by child predators. According to YouTube, 76 percent videos of those 6.7 million were removed before they received a single view.