The Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) video of an adorablechild creator makes viewers relaxed. The video was an optimal choice for those who strove to maintain inner peace after work. Unfortunately, now the video is nowhere to be found. Inferring from the comments made by the creator, the video was forcefully erased because of repeated anonymous reports. Numerous YouTube videos possessing no harmful content are now unilaterally being erased.
On December 20, 2018, several YouTube videos of the nine-year-old Korean creator Ttuiye were reported by unspecified users and forced to be erased. Ttuiye was the sensational food-eating ASMR creator who had collected almost 700, 000 subscribers from the day she uploaded the first video to late December. In response to the deletion of her videos, YouTube Corporation only repeated that reported videos were against the YouTube Community Guidelines, without disclosing any specific reasons.
Comments such as “a child should not earn money at such an early age” and “she earns money too easily by making a video” all indicate the hidden motivation behind the reporting—unmitigated jealousy of her popularity. This unjustness shocked the viewers and made them question YouTube’s guidelines for content management, deepening concerns regarding its reporting system.
As another example, YouTuber Haha ha, who posts cat videos, has recently received a message from YouTube to be told to erase his video. The corresponding video only featured the creator feeding fish to his cats, but YouTube firmly insisted it was thoroughly checked by the relevant authorities before it was decided to be deleted.
Turns out, the website was being censored by Artificial Intelligence (AI) known as the YouTube Bot. AI's censoring is based on detecting the taboo words from the content's title and comments. Since the taboo words are only shared by the YouTube facilities and the AI, this made the creators obfuscated with the censorship they received. Jug-handled judgment and coercion from YouTube made viewers lose their credibility about YouTube's censoring, too.
YouTube yet did have an understandable reason for reporting and deletion. The YouTube Community Guidelines could be interpreted in a broad sense. The reporting section only includes categories such as “nudity and sexual content” and “harmful or dangerous content,” not giving a margin to specific reasons. This broad range was mainly for promoting the detection of sexual-content videos.
As YouTube is open to all ages, it is important to protect children and adolescents by obstructing sensitive contents and also preventing children from posting such improper videos. 12-year-old YouTuber Life with MAK once uploaded an ASMR video of role-playing as a police officer in a sexual tone. YouTube, deciding that it may be seen as pedophilic content, deleted the video. However, YouTube further decided to delete all videos by young creators regardless of the content, leading to severe censorship of young creators' creations.
As seen in the previous cases, YouTube's policies tend to be based on overgeneralizations and are too easily executed. Those lambasted policies are both caused by provocative videos and their ensuing influences. To prevent further damage, limiting the viewer's age should be prior to erasing the videos. By establishing an age limit, this could make YouTube authorities deliberate about the contents. Stricter censorship and unhesitant elimination of videos hinder the creativity of YouTube creators and baffle their will for further dedication to qualitative creations. Every creation should be valued and has the right to be expressed.