YouTube to restrict 'disturbing' children's videos, if flagged

BBC News, Nov 10, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I've been reporting on the disturbing videos on YouTube (here on October 23 and here when James Bridle's article appeared November 6). According to this article, Google will remove the videos if they are reported. But the scale of the problem is overwhelming. As James Bridle noted, "the videos had been algorithmically generated to capitalise on popular trends. 'Stock animations, audio tracks, and lists of keywords being assembled in their thousands to produce an endless stream of videos,' he said." How many human hours would it take human viewers to report these? Thousands? Millions? And why is Google trying to offload its responsibilities on its viewers? There's a limit to what companies should expect to crowdsource - this is one of them.

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