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These are not even remotely equivalent things.

Advertisers are not a homogeneous block. YouTube et al can afford to piss off some advertisers; if they're pissing off all advertisers, the material is probably extremely objectionable to most humans.

I challenge you to point out an example of content that has been banned from youtube because it offends advertisers, that you really think the banning of which is a significant issue. There's no shortage of material on YT hypercritical of Goldman "Vampire Squid" Sachs.

Whereas there is a long litany of material banned from Chinese networks for obvious political reasons. Furthermore, if you don't like YT's policy, you can use other video sharing sites or even gasp host your own videos. Try doing that in China and see how long it takes for men with guns to show up.






YouTube's algorithm suppresses LGBTQ content more than usual which is something that most people agree shouldn't be suppressed. At the same time, I don't think it's because advertisers want to suppress the content. I just think it's a bug with YouTube's algorithm.

Could it be that it’s just not as popular as one might think?

No. Keeping out LGBT related keywords was shown to increase their performance.

Yeah but is it the algorithm suppressing such content, or is that outside of a vocal minority, similar tags reduce interest in the content, on average?

So a thing that you should know about YouTube is that if a video is demonetized, it loses ranking in search engines. Since videos seem to be automatically demonetized if they have LGBT related tags, it is much more likely that the lose in ranking is due to the demonetization that is due to the LGBT content.

It might be the case that advertisers aren’t interested in such content at all. I think similar things happened with PewDiePie a lot before he started censoring himself.

Instead of trying to derive the reason for the suppression of LGBT content on YouTube from first principles or hunches, maybe you should dig into the evidence first.

https://www.theverge.com/platform/amp/2018/6/4/17424472/yout...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2019/08/14/youtube...

https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-features/lgbtq-...


In that last story did the suit go anywhere? It was 2017.

The washingtonpost story can be proven false. Whenever I add the word lesbian to a video title traffic goes up 4x the average.

The everage article was interesting. Keywords trans or transgender could put the video into a more mature sexualized context. Most searches with that term probably have a mature/porn intent. It's one of the more popular sexual preferences by keyword search volume so the context of other words matter more.


First of all, are you certain YouTube is blocking content? I am not so convinced. Also, define "most people". I, personally am pro civil liberties and am pro LGBTQ+ rights, however there are vast swaths of the world where LGBTQ+ is not only frowned upon by society but actually illegal at the nation state level.

> YouTube's algorithm suppresses LGBTQ content more than usual

Similar story with Tumblr. I had been using Tumblr for a good many years, for non-pornographic use/material (I shoot landscapes and buildings, and I liked the way I could post/group my photos). It pissed me off though when they (Tumblr) clamped down on sexual content, because it really hurt the LGBTQIA+ communities. A similar clamp down on Pinterest also made me drop them equally fast.

I don't know what conservative agenda they took on, but there were other ways to "protect the sensitive eyes" of their conservative users, without shutting down freedom of expression.


I don't get how you can come so close to hitting the nail on the head and still miss it?

Content that is specifically about LGBT issues is almost always going to involve sexuality at some point or another. Advertisers are skittish about their ads running next to such content. Tumblr wanted to become more attractive to advertisers, so they clamped down on sexual content. By clamping down on sexual content, they also incidentally clamped down on LGBT content. They probably also clamped down on people talking about straight sexuality as well, but that doesn't raise censorship alarms because the explanation for "censorship" is just plain typical American prudishness that is generally accepted.

This is almost certainly the same dynamic at play on youtube.

You can call this a "conservative agenda" if you want, but IMHO you are twisting the debate to frame it as a political wedge issue when it really isn't.


I don't think you could have proved their point any harder.

The equating of sexuality (an identity) to sex (an action) and specifically targeting identities that are not straight _is_ the problem. Under Yahoo (and in a bumbling attempt to adhere to App Store guidelines), completely safe for work content (from discussions to screenshots from media to even teenagers venting or asking for advice) that happened to contain words like "lesbian" got censored/marked as NSFW - meanwhile content that was much more sex-related than that (e.g. a gif from a movie showing two straight characters kissing or getting handsy) would pass just fine. But of course, it's "twisting the debate" to find it absurd and obviously homophobic that a girl _typing_ about wanting to marry another girl someday is considered pornographic in comparison.


As you say, not understanding the difference between sexuality and sex is exactly the problem.

Where we disagree is I do not believe this is any kind of moral judgement biased against LGBT content. It's just that content explicitly designed to be LGBT is going to trip stupid automated moderating systems, just like content explicitly designed to be about BDSM or any other kind of sex related topic, whether it is LGBT or not.

Images are a different kind of problem entirely. Again, computers don't understand context. Recognizing a boob or a penis is hard, but still relatively easy compared to understanding that images can be highly sexual without any overt images of sex.

Yes, these sites don't understand the context you want them to understand. But no, I don't think it's a politically conservative motivated judgement (in all likelihood of course, I can't say for certain... and likely neither can you).


>to trip stupid automated moderating systems

Sex/Sexuality/Gender/etc.

There is some confusion on these. One has to do with identity, the other has to do with sexual partner choice. I.e. I was born a man, I feel like a woman. In an unrelated (to identity) note, I prefer X-Y-Z as my sexual partner.

The conservative/conservatism bit has to do with the hypocrisy that man, woman should be the only available choices of gender, and that "man + woman" should be the only allowed sexual partnership. I will not bring religion to the discussion, it only makes things shittier.

This (imho) is the founding stone of fascism, you are different than me (postpartum gender change not allowed), and your choices are different than mine (man + woman, and no other combo allowed).

When a company suppresses and eventually kicks out these communities, they may be doing it for the $$$$, but in the end of the day they ostracize people only because of their identity and choices. As for the “stupid automated moderating..” I call bullcrap. It is a mix of hate and incompetency. But driven by hate and conservatism.

If Tumblr wanted, they could have created an tagging mechanism that could facilitate people to find their own groups/fandoms.


> But no, I don't think it's a politically conservative motivated judgement

Censoring the literal word "lesbian" is not a politically/socially conservative judgment to you?

Okay.


Since when did conservatives use Tumblr?

Same reason as Facebook: advertisers don't want their ads shown next to controversial content. As a matter of fact, the LGBTQIA+ communities aren't all about sex, and it's homophobic to say they are.


The whole point is that non-sexual content (Eg: references to being gay) got banned as sexual.

> YouTube et al can afford to piss off some advertisers; if they're pissing off all advertisers, the material is probably extremely objectionable to most humans.

You don't have to have consensus from advertisers to ban something. If an advertiser of significant enough size, or a block doing similar, threatens, YouTube will listen.

> I challenge you to point out an example of content that has been banned from youtube because it offends advertisers, that you really think the banning of which is a significant issue.

You don't have to ban it, you just have to demonetize it and content creators will fall in line.

> Whereas there is a long litany of material banned from Chinese networks for obvious political reasons.

I really think you need to reckon with this. You speak a lot about hosting your own shit, but, as American hegemony crumbles, your consumption will meet road blocks.


All American companies move in lockstep. We see one company after another pull out of facebook advertising very quickly last week. They work together as a group with a consistent goal.

This week we saw one social media platform after another ban the same people. The North American cartel moves together as one, once again.

You can host your own videos but if you do expect to be banned by paypal and mastercard and visa. Because all north american companies are just different faces of the same underlying entity.

Chinese companies offer real competition to that. Chinese companies are very good for my political freedom.


> Chinese companies offer real competition to that. Chinese companies are very good for my political freedom.

I would not totally agree with that statement. In some ways I may be able to speak more freely as a foreigner on Chinese run platforms because China might not care to suppress the same news that American run platforms would try to suppress. I would not agree that they offer political freedom. The CCP does not believe in any level of free speech. For an example see the recent news. Not only do they want to suppress it but even outside China they try to erase that history.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/thomasbrewster/2020/06/12/zoom-...


I'm not going to say Chinese companies are better than American. But having both available is better for me than only having American.

Amen.

That's why Blizzard decided to come out against the Hong Kong people? Western companies don't move in lockstep because they scramble in whatever direction they think a dollar is in.

I can name plenty of western companies that have come out in support of the Hong Kong people and plenty that have abandoned them for a quick buck. Can you name one Chinese (Not Honk Kong or Taiwanese companies, these are under different governments) company that has come out in support of the people of Hong Kong against the CCP?


I don't disagree that no company has spoken out, but given that "the Hong Kong people" are not a singular entity and support for the protestors in so far as their methods go has been declining, it simply does not make business sense to do so, which is to say nothing about what's morally right as business rarely takes moral stances.

A few high profile companies deciding to stop advertising on Facebook is not "All American companies move in lockstep". Thousands of companies still advertise on Facebook, and Facebook is still doing fine.

Tell me what kind of videos you'll be banned by payments companies over, please. Because I used to run the (at the time) biggest BDSM porn company on the internet, and yes we took credit cards.

There is no "North American cartel". There are no chemtrails either.


> Tell me what kind of videos you'll be banned by payments companies over, please.

Videos showing American war crimes, specifically the “capital murder” video on wikileaks, which caused visa, paypal and mastercard to all pull the ability to use their services to donate to wikileaks.


Do you mean this video, "Collateral Murder", which is currently available on Youtube?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rXPrfnU3G0

Doesn't look very banned to me.


>All American companies move in lockstep. We see one company after another pull out of facebook advertising very quickly last week. They work together as a group with a consistent goal.

Sounds like they're moving in lockstep in response to public sentiment. Is that a bad thing?


If American public sentiment wants my country destroyed, then it's a bad thing for my country. Today they don't but who knows about tomorrow? Extremists are taking over and the situation is unfolding in very unpredictable ways.

>If American public sentiment wants my country destroyed, then it's a bad thing for my country.

Might be bad for you, but probably not bad for Americans. The people have spoken and the corporations are doing their bidding. Sounds like what most people want from their government. This as opposed to China, where an autocrat is deciding what to do and enforcing his will onto his subjects. Whether it's ethical or not is besides the point, because otherwise this conversation just devolves into a discussion on the merits of democracy.


"but probably not bad for Americans"

That is scary.




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