YouTube says it will now block channels linked to Russia-backed media outlets worldwide. Last week, it blocked channels from the likes of RT and Sputnik in Europe following an EU directive. The updated policy takes effect immediately, though YouTube’s systems will take a little time to fully block the channels.
2/ In line with that, we are also now blocking access to YouTube channels associated with Russian state-funded media globally, expanding from across Europe. This change is effective immediately, and we expect our systems to take time to ramp up.
— YouTubeInsider (@YouTubeInsider) March 11, 2022
The service also said “denying, minimizing or trivializing well-documented violent events” is not allowed under its Community Guidelines. YouTube is taking down videos about the conflict in Ukraine that violate the rule. On Thursday, Twitter and Facebook removed posts from Russia’s embassy in the UK that denied the bombing of a maternity hospital in Mariupol, Ukraine.
YouTube has also deleted more than 1,000 channels and over 15,000 videos related to Russia’s invasion ok Ukraine for violating various policies, such as those on hate speech, misinformation and graphic content. Google stopped all ad sales in Russia last week and it has now paused all YouTube monetization and payments in the country.
YouTube says it may take further action in Russia as the conflict continues. In addition, it’s directing users to trusted sources of news regarding the invasion.