YouTube to remove videos promoting election fraud claims

Following Wednesday’s violent pro-Trump riot at the U.S. Capitol, YouTube announced Thursday that it would remove certain videos that promote claims of fraud in the 2020 president election.

RELATED: 4 dead, 52 arrested, 14 police officers injured after U.S. Capitol Siege

This move from the internet’s foremost video platform comes after Facebook and Instagram indefinitely banned President Donald Trump for at least the remaining two weeks of his presidency.

“Due to the disturbing events that transpired yesterday, and given that the election results have now been certified, starting today *any* channels posting new videos with false claims in violation of our policies will now receive a strike,” YouTube’s official multi-tweet statement reads.

The video site then went on to describe how over the past month it had taken down “thousand of videos” promoting claims that widespread fraud affected the outcome of the 2020 election, including “several videos” that Trump uploaded to his channel.

“Like other major policy updates, in our Help Center, we noted that there would be a short grace period after the Dec update & new content that broke our rules would be removed without penalty,” the statement continues. “The grace period was scheduled to end on Inauguration Day.”

“Channels that receive a strike are temporarily suspended from posting or live streaming,” YouTube explained. “Channels that receive three strikes in the same 90-day period will be permanently removed from YouTube. We apply our policies and penalties consistently, regardless of who uploads it.”

In an email from YouTube presumably sent to conservative pundit Dave Rubin, a screenshot of which he shared on Twitter, the platform said that it does not allow content that “misleads people” by promoting such election fraud claims, adding that “[t]his policy applies to videos uploaded on or after December 9.”

On the other hand, content with “sufficient ESDA context,” YouTube pointed out, is allowed to remain on its site, “though we require a higher bar for making these kind of exceptions.”

The email then went on to explain the latest policy change affecting videos posted after Thursday, January 7.

“Now that the election results have been certified, and due to the extraordinary events that transpired [on Wednesday],” the email continued, “videos uploaded on or after today (January 7) that violate this policy will both be removed and a strike will be applied to the channel.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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