YouTube Stiffens Anti-Harassment Policies, Demeaning Language Rules After Right Winger’s Anti-Gay Attacks

The Verge reports:

YouTube today announced an expansion of its anti-harassment policy that will ban video creators from insulting one another on the basis of their race, gender expression, or sexual orientation — even if the person they are insulting is a popular creator, celebrity, politician, or other public figure.

The new policy comes several months after YouTube was criticized for declining to remove videos posted by right-wing commentator Steven Crowder in which he repeatedly called Vox video host Carlos Maza a “lispy queer,” among other things. In the face of strong public outrage, YouTube said it would reconsider all of its harassment policies.

The review was initially intended to focus on videos in which one creator targets another, like what happened in the Crowder case. But today’s update goes further, making four core changes to YouTube’s policy.

CNET reports:

YouTube pledges to crack down on demeaning language, saying it will no longer allow content that maliciously insults someone based on protected attributes like race, gender or sexual orientation. That applies to attacks on private people, other creators, politicians and celebrities.

It also promises to go beyond its past practice of prohibiting explicit threats, now pledging to ban veiled or implied threats too. It gave the examples of content simulating violence toward someone or language suggesting that physical violence may occur.

And creators who show a pattern of harassing behavior may find their ability to make money on YouTube revoked, even if no individual instance of harassment crosses the line.