YouTube confirmed Wednesday that the company will no longer allow any anti-vaccine content on its network to limit “misinformation” and help improve inoculation rates. The decision is not specific to COVID-19 and includes other diseases like Hepatitis B and the Measles.
The company posted a formal explanation on its official blog.
“Our Community Guidelines already prohibit certain types of medical misinformation. We’ve long removed content that promotes harmful remedies, such as saying drinking turpentine can cure diseases. At the onset of COVID-19, we built on these policies when the pandemic hit, and worked with experts to develop 10 new policies around COVID-19 and medical misinformation. Since last year, we’ve removed over 130,000 videos for violating our COVID-19 vaccine policies,” writes YouTube.
YouTube is blocking all anti-vaccine content and banning prominent anti-vaccine activists https://t.co/IdvAE2ebQU
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) September 29, 2021
“Specifically, content that falsely alleges that approved vaccines are dangerous and cause chronic health effects, claims that vaccines do not reduce transmission or contraction of disease, or contains misinformation on the substances contained in vaccines will be removed. This would include content that falsely says that approved vaccines cause autism, cancer or infertility, or that substances in vaccines can track those who receive them. Our policies not only cover specific routine immunizations like for measles or Hepatitis B, but also apply to general statements about vaccines,” adds the company.
“Today’s policy update is an important step to address vaccine and health misinformation on our platform, and we’ll continue to invest across the board in the policies and products that bring high quality information to our viewers and the entire YouTube community,” the streaming service concluded.