YouTube has detailed how it will scale up its censorship efforts in the run-up to the 2022 US midterm elections by removing election “misinformation” and suppressing content that doesn’t break any rules but is considered to be “borderline.”
YouTube claims that its election misinformation policy applies to any past US presidential election, the 2021 German federal election, and the 2014 and 2018 Brazilian presidential elections. Under this policy, alleging that “widespread fraud, errors, or glitches” occurred in these elections or claiming that “certified results of those elections were false” is banned.
Despite YouTube’s claim that this policy applies to any past US presidential election, numerous videos questioning the 2016 US presidential results and alleging that Russia hacked the election are still on the platform. By contrast, the policy was used to remove more than 8,000 channels for making “harmful and misleading” claims about the 2020 US presidential election. And YouTube said it’s already removed several videos related to the 2022 US midterms.
In addition to removing content that breaks its election misinformation rules, YouTube will also prevent “borderline” content from being widely recommended. According to YouTube, borderline content doesn’t break any rules but is suppressed because it comes close to breaking the rules.