Activists call for YouTube to dump Trump channel
San Francisco (AFP)
An activist group on Tuesday called for YouTube to join other social media platforms in dumping US President Donald Trump, threatening an advertising boycott campaign.
A #StopHateForProfit campaign demanded the Google-owned video sharing platform take down Trump's verified channel because it is giving Trump the opportunity "to continue spreading false information" about the validity of the election he lost in November.
"If YouTube does not agree with us and join the other platforms in banning Trump, we're going to go to the advertisers next," said Common Sense Media chief executive Jim Steyer, an organizer of the campaign.
The home page of the Trump channel featured a month-old video of Trump casting doubt on the voting process that had logged some 5.8 million views.
The free channel itself had 2.77 million subscribers.
Facebook last week suspended Trump's Facebook and Instagram accounts following the violent invasion of the US Capitol by a mob of his supporters, which disrupted the certification of President-elect Joe Biden's election victory.
Twitter went a step further by deleting Trump's account, depriving him of his favorite megaphone.
Trump also was hit with suspensions from services like Snapchat and Twitch.
In announcing the suspension last week, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg said Trump used the platform to incite violent and was concerned he would continue to do so.
Before the November 3 presidential election, the social network stepped up efforts to combat disinformation campaigns and suspended many accounts, groups and pages with violent or hate-filled content.
Facebook said Monday that it is taking similar precautions leading up to the inauguration of Biden as president on Jan. 20, using the same teams to battle misinformation and content that could incite violence.
Content containing the phrase "stop the steal" will be removed from Facebook and Instagram, according to executives Monika Bickert and Guy Rosen.
Facebook is also keeping in place a pause on all ads in the US about politics or elections, meaning no ads from politicians including Trump.
© 2021 AFP