Was Youtube Right to Ban the Alt-Right? - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Was Youtube Right to Ban Bismarck?

YES
18
51%
NO
17
49%
#15086499
Who was Walt Bismarck? From 2015-2018, the youtuber known as Walt Bismarck created alt-right song parodies of Disney classics. His original username was Uncuck The Right, and he aligned himself with white nationalist and neonazi organizations across the web. Most prominently, he appeared on Episode 35 of Fash the Nation. Thankfully, youtube deleted him. But he's planning to come back. It could be a month, it could be a year, who knows. Let this video serve as a record of who he is. There will be no rebranding, not until he's held responsible for the things he's said.

Longer Explanation Here - https://youtu.be/S1A2sXzSw7M

Was Youtube Right To Ban Him?
#15086537
Since the focus is on his being Alt Right, I am going to write this addressing the Alt Right angle.

I tend to agree with the idea that major media platforms should not function under the same set of rules that publishers do. I think there needs to be a new category for conceptualizing them -- 'social media' or 'media platform' or some such. This is where a site like YouTube or Twitter basically encourages people to post whatever content that they want that follows basic standards of decency (no smut or gore) and doesn't violate copyrights, but otherwise is simply them exercising their free speech and building a following. I am even open to the idea that there could be clearly banned or demonetized words for the sake of decency, but ultimately, if Joe Schmoe is being banned for politely stating edgy ideas, it's a violation of his first amendment right to make use of a media platform for his purposes the same way that everyone else is.

Generally speaking, we have to update the way that we conceive certain websites. Obviously, a pure media site is under no obligation to publish content it doesn't want to, and if someone creates the "Revolutionary Left Video Host" or some website obviously with an angle on it that is meant to limit content and promote a particular view, it can. But companies that are inviting humanity to come aboard and post whatever content they want in an effort to network and build a following making decisions after the fact to target unpopular beliefs with removal is not proper, IMO.
#15086542
Yes. Why should YouTube/Alphabet compromise themselves by hosting odious content?
#15086543
Private companies can ban anyone they want on their platform, unless the country the company is operating from has laws on discrimination, where it may be illegal to ban someone simply on the basis of their race, ethnicity, religion, sex, disability etc.

So Youtube can ban alt-right if they want, that's up to them.
#15086545
I have no problem with them banning whomever they please. Facebook is a private company. It is not responsible to "the people". It is responsible to "the customers". My default position has always been that a private company can do whatever it likes if it does not harm people. But also that it should be responsible for what it does. However.

As Verve says, this is a new day.

Facebook has contrived to make itself an indispensable utility. It business model does not sell subscriptions and thereby limit membership to those willing to pay but rather openly seeks to become ubiquitous. Now I have no problem with Facebook curbing some content. It is bad for business. Facebook sells advertising. In order to do that it must remain a place where advertisers choose to go. It is a very fine line.

Facebook also wants to be treated like a publisher. It wants to have protection against being held liable for what is printed under the claim of the free speech rights not that it holds but that others hold. An example.

Suppose we look at Trump's calling Hillary "crooked Hillary". She could have sued him for libel. She did not. But what if she could have sued Facebook for publishing it? Suppose someone says, on Facebook, that my consulting firm is incompetent? Why can't I sue Facebook for publishing it to the world? Why are they able to duck responsibility when a newspaper is not?

In my perfect world I would ban all political speech from Facebook. No MAGA hats, no BLM posters, etc. But if they did nobody would want to go there anymore. So the best Facebook can reasonably be expected to do is to refrain from providing a platform to those whose ideas are so outrageous and harmful that the very presence of this material would drive people away.

As far as interfering in the election. There is absolutely no doubt whatsoever that Russia (and others) actually used Facebook to affect the last election. No doubt at all. Facebook must either act to prevent this or face the duty of congress to protect the sanctity of the election process.

So at the end of the day, Facebook is between the proverbial rock and the hard place. It must maintain the broad based appeal of its pages, keep the support of it advertisers and fascinate the customer while not damaging others (including our form of government) in the process. Youtube is the exact same thing.
#15086584
When the LGBT community began getting censored due to changes in YouTube's policies, they whined and YouTube capitulated because there is no longer an issue with the taboos of the LGBT community. It is a safe topic that is endorsed by every Fortune 500 company.

YouTube Says It Wrongly Blocked Some LGBT Videos In "Restricted Mode"

Keep in mind that some of these videos were videos teaching children to become trannies.

The speech that is now taboo and is to be banned on YouTube was formally accepted speech in normal society.

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#15086587
So, @maz, it's all right for an extreme alt-right group to complain, but not for an extreme alt-left one to complain? :roll:

Everyone has a right to complain, but in the end, Youtube decides what does damage and what shouldn't be on their platform. if you don't like that, then tough beans.

maz wrote:The speech that is now taboo and is to be banned on YouTube was formally accepted speech in normal society.
Complete bullshit!
#15086591
maz wrote:When the LGBT community began getting censored due to changes in YouTube's policies, they whined and YouTube capitulated because there is no longer an issue with the taboos of the LGBT community. It is a safe topic that is endorsed by every Fortune 500 company.


The issue was that YouTube's algorithms would mistake political or philosophical content about LGBTQ+ issues (for using tags such as 'gay', 'lesbian', etc.) with pornographic search terms, thus unfairly censoring that content.
#15086595
Obviously no one has any rights on YouTube as they have determined that they can be both a platform and a publisher whenever convenient. They can arbitrarily decide who gets to say what based on the popular opinion of the time.

If YouTube had existed in the 80’s they would banning Ozzy Osbourne, Public Enemy and Guns N Roses and anything anti-government.

Now Youtube is explicitly pro-government and that includes pro LGBT, pro war, pro child trannies etc.
#15086596
maz wrote:If YouTube had existed in the 80’s they would banning Ozzy Osbourne, Public Enemy and Guns N Roses and anything anti-government.
No. They'd be much like MUch Music and banning stuff like Queen, for dressing in women's clothing.

maz wrote:Now Youtube is explicitly pro-government and that includes pro LGBT, pro war, pro child trannies etc.
:roll: FFS, do you have an argument, or are you just spouting mindless rhetoric? None of this is true.
#15086600
I think YouTube did the right thing by banning those alt-right dirt bags because the world is better off without them spreading their insidious, hateful and divisive ideology and shouldn't be given a platform to do so.
#15086606
Verv wrote:
Since the focus is on his being Alt Right, I am going to write this addressing the Alt Right angle.

I tend to agree with the idea that major media platforms should not function under the same set of rules that publishers do. I think there needs to be a new category for conceptualizing them -- 'social media' or 'media platform' or some such. This is where a site like YouTube or Twitter basically encourages people to post whatever content that they want that follows basic standards of decency (no smut or gore) and doesn't violate copyrights, but otherwise is simply them exercising their free speech and building a following. I am even open to the idea that there could be clearly banned or demonetized words for the sake of decency, but ultimately, if Joe Schmoe is being banned for politely stating edgy ideas, it's a violation of his first amendment right to make use of a media platform for his purposes the same way that everyone else is.

Generally speaking, we have to update the way that we conceive certain websites. Obviously, a pure media site is under no obligation to publish content it doesn't want to, and if someone creates the "Revolutionary Left Video Host" or some website obviously with an angle on it that is meant to limit content and promote a particular view, it can. But companies that are inviting humanity to come aboard and post whatever content they want in an effort to network and build a following making decisions after the fact to target unpopular beliefs with removal is not proper, IMO.



If it walks like an excuse, and quacks like an excuse, is it an excuse?
#15086608
Youtube has a right to ban anyone on their servers. It is a privately owned company after all. However, as for freedom of expression, the decision is wrong.

Alt-right is a mainstream ideology in the West. It is like Youtube banned masses. Youtube's ban may backfire. It can be a marketing mistake.
#15086609
Istanbuller wrote:
Youtube has a right to ban anyone on their servers. It is a privately owned company after all. However, as for freedom of expression, the decision is wrong.

Alt-right is a mainstream ideology in the West. It is like Youtube banned masses. Youtube's ban may backfire. It can be a marketing mistake.



Extremism is not mainstream.
#15086612
late wrote:If it walks like an excuse, and quacks like an excuse, is it an excuse?


What do you mean?

I believe it is a human right for people to express their opinions, even if they are disgusting.

This is a common enough line, and we have even seen left wing superstars like Noam Chomsky argue on behalf of Neo-Nazis in Germany because of this.

“Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech.” - Noam Chomsky


YouTube is a massive platform, right, it's basically like a public square.

I think people should be able to say things that are very politically or religiously incorrect on YouTube, just as they could on the streets, because I think YouTube doesn't function as a private publisher and advertises itself as a place to come and build an audience.

Do you have some arguments on the topic you want to present? I may not have understood your point.
#15086617
Verv wrote:
Do you have some arguments on the topic you want to present? I may not have understood your point.



I think you answered my question.

A society has to protect itself. Which means you have to limit damage. History tells us there are always crazies, and they can do enormous amounts of damage if you let them go unchecked.

No freedom, no right is absolute. There is sometimes a statue of Lady Justice in front of a court. She carries a balance. The intent is to strike a balance between competing rights and interests.

We need to find that balance point here, as well.
#15086619
Istanbuller wrote:
It is. You have an alt-right president. They are marching to be majority in Europe as well. Golden ages are ahead for alt-right.



The pendulum is swinging the other way, at least here it is. We had midterm elections in 2018, and Dems won big.

Trump is always in the 40s, meaning most Americans aren't happy about the crap he pulls. Unless Republicans steal the election, he loses.

Your gold is a cheap gilt that is wearing off fast.
#15086837
Godstud wrote:So, @maz, it's all right for an extreme alt-right group to complain, but not for an extreme alt-left one to complain? :roll:

Everyone has a right to complain, but in the end, Youtube decides what does damage and what shouldn't be on their platform. if you don't like that, then tough beans.


Both groups were complaining about the same thing; censorship, and they had a right to complain. YouTube decided that only one side deserved to have their grievances heard and to be heard by others and that is fine. The ostracized moved on to more open platforms where their political enemies fear to tread.

Political YouTube seems more like an echo chamber in terms of content where videos are a mix of approved but cringe "organic" content creator and mainstream media corporate dross. And of course heavy handed censorship where content creators are not even allowed to talk about 1/10th of the things we can talk openly about here, right on this forum! The exact thing that people were fighting against in the 1980s.

Donna wrote:The issue was that YouTube's algorithms would mistake political or philosophical content about LGBTQ+ issues (for using tags such as 'gay', 'lesbian', etc.) with pornographic search terms, thus unfairly censoring that content.


And that is exactly how the algorithm first started to work against the people that YouTube deemed unacceptable. Their content got flagged with "hate" even though they were just talking about regular issues such as immigration, crime or other social or current events. They would get demonetized and have their videos buried or removed.

The Buzzfeed article that I posted was something very different. This was a model that could have worked across the entire platform, for all users. It was a filter that would prevent people from seeing things. Pretty much every social media/big tech platform has this very rudimentary feature.

For instance, if you are a conservative who isn't interested in hearing about whatever 65 gender LGBT issues YouTube could have simply set up a filter that would restrict that content from reaching you and your family's feed.

Conversely, if you were a member of the LGBT community and didn't want videos featuring religion, guns, immigration or homeschooling, YouTube could have easily set up a filter that would have prevented you from seeing that.

What we have found out was that there were special interest groups who had a vested interest in their political enemy's messages and wanted to prevent them from speaking at all costs.

Conversely, the individuals on the other side seemed to have been more than open to having their political opposition speak on an open platform as long as they could be there to engage them in debate.

There was never any reason to have to remove anything that wasn't directly in violation of existing laws or already per-existing terms and conditions of the platforms as they were when they were originally created.

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