YouTube is responsible for conveying misleading and false information around the world and is not taking necessary measures to tackle the widespread on its platform, according to a large group of fact checking organisations.
A total of 80 groups, including Full Fact in the UK and the Washington Post's Fact Checker, have alleged that the platform condones contents such as those from doctors who give misinformation about Covid, and videos with misleading narrative about the US presidential election.
Signatories from more than 40 countries submitted a letter to YouTube Chief Executive Susan Wojcicki which highlights the concerns raised by YouTube's contents, reports The Guardian.
The letter claims, "YouTube is allowing its platform to be weaponised by unscrupulous actors to manipulate and exploit others, and to organise and fundraise themselves. Current measures are proving insufficient."
It describes YouTube, a company owned by Google, as a "major conduit" for falsehoods and urges the implementation of particular changes in its operations.
There should be "a commitment to funding independent research into disinformation campaigns on the platform, links provided to rebuttals inside videos distributing disinformation and misinformation, a stop to its algorithms from promoting repeat offenders, and more done to tackle falsehoods in non-English-language videos."
"We hope you will consider implementing these ideas for the public good and to make YouTube a platform that truly does its best to prevent disinformation and misinformation being weaponised against its users and society at large," said the letter.
The letter includes more examples of "fake" content made against the former Filipino president and about the rising trend of hate speech against certain vulnerable groups from Brazil.
In response to the allegations raised in the letter, YouTube spokesperson Elena Hernandez defended the company saying it has made large investments to ensure various policies which include reducing the spread of "borderline" misinformation and removing "violative" content which would breach the platform's guidelines.
"We're always looking for meaningful ways to improve and will continue to strengthen our work with the fact checking community," she added.
According to YouTube's community guidelines, "certain types of misleading or deceptive content with serious risk of egregious harm" are not allowed to be posted, such as advertising harmful remedies or treatments and interfering with government elections.
Earlier, in October 2020, YouTube has taken action to remove all misinformation regarding Covid and vaccines.