YouTube bans 'implied' threats

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Dec 12 2019 07:25 AM

SAN FRANCISCO - YouTube broadened its anti-harassment policies on Wednesday to include a ban on "implied" threats along with insults based on race, gender identity or sexual orientation.

"We will no longer allow content that maliciously insults someone based on protected attributes such as their race, gender expression, or sexual orientation," global head of trust and safety Matt Halprin said in an online post.

"This applies to everyone, from private individuals, to YouTube creators, to public officials."

YouTube already bans explicit threats, but now "veiled or implied" threats will be barred as well, according to Halprin.

"This includes content simulating violence toward an individual or language suggesting physical violence may occur," Halprin said.

"No individual should be subject to harassment that suggests violence."

The changes stem in part from YouTube's July pledge to crack down on "creator-on-creator harassment," the Washington Post reported.

The platform was berated for leaving up videos from Steven Crowder, a right-wing commentator who regularly insulted gay Vox producer Carlos Maza based on his sexual orientation and Cuban heritage. 

Maza's video montage of insults from Crowder over a period of years -- including "lispy sprite" and "angry little queer" -- went viral, prompting a YouTube investigation that concluded they didn't violate its hate speech policies.