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YouTube to increase moderators to 10,000 to combat unsavoury content

YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki has announced a series of actions to further combat violent or extremist content in the company’s latest blog post.

In the post, Wojcicki admitted that while the platform has been “a force for creativity, learning and access to information”, a “more troubling side” has emerged to mislead, manipulate, harass or even harm.

Having mentioned several policies it has employed, including tightening policies on content that can appear on YouTube or earn revenue for creators and new machine learning technology, as well as increasing its enforcement teams, Wojcicki said they are taking further actions to combat unsavoury content.

“Since June, our trust and safety teams have manually reviewed nearly 2 million videos for violent extremist content, helping train our machine-learning technology to identify similar videos in the future,” she said.

“Human reviewers remain essential to both removing content and training machine learning systems because human judgement is critical to making contextualised decisions on content. ”

Adding on to that, Wojcicki said the video platform is planning to take on extra staff to work on addressing content that might violate policies in 2018 – up to 10,000.

She said the company is expanding the network of academics, industry groups and subject matter experts to better understand emerging issues.

Wojcicki also promised that the tech giant will be creating a regular report to provide more aggregate data about the flags it receives and the actions it takes to bring more transparency.

The video platform has not experienced smooth sailing this year. This Tuesday, YouTube’s patent company Google is involved in a rare public spat which it said it would block its video streaming application YouTube from two Amazon.com Inc devices, Echo Show and Fire TV, and criticised Amazon for not selling Google hardware.

In March 2017, YouTube has come under fire after an investigation by The Times witnessed advertising appearing next to extremist content. Major advertisers including Amazon, Cadbury, eBay, Mars, Diageo, Adidas, HP and Deutsche Bank stopped advertising on YouTube over concerns.

YouTube’s patent company Google was also accused of a lack of transparency in data when reporting advertising results.

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