Technology 2 min read

YouTube Reverts to Human Moderation Due to Over-Censorship

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Earlier in March, YouTube announced that it was sending its content moderators home due to the pandemic. Instead, AI systems would handle the removal of inappropriate videos from the platform.

YouTube gave its machine systems the authority to take action on videos that contain potentially harmful content or misinformation.

What’s more, the company programmed the AI system to be as thorough as possible. Unfortunately, that also means it’ll remove videos with marginal content that didn’t entirely violate YouTube guidelines.

As you may have guessed, the change affected several content creators on the video streaming platform.

YouTube removed almost 11 million videos between April and June — twice the usual amount. At the same time, the platform reinstated about 160,000 of those videos after the creators filed an appeal — again, twice the usual amount.

In other words, YouTube was removing and reinstating content at twice its usual rate due to artificial intelligence. Yes, it was a huge mess.

Thankfully, the confusion is coming to an end.

YouTube Reverts to Human Moderation to vet Potentially Harmful Contents

After admitting that its dependence on AI resulted in over-censorship, the video streaming giant has returned to human moderation.

Speaking to the Financial Times, YouTube’s chief product officer, Neal Mohan, said human moderators are now vetting content on the platform. Furthermore, Mhan admitted AI moderation has some limitations.

For example, although machines can identify potentially harmful content, they’re are not good at deciding what should be removed.

On the other hand, trained human evaluators can make decisions that tend to be more nuanced, says Mohan. This is especially true in areas such as medical misinformation, hate speech, or harassment.

AI systems still have a vital role in content moderation. Since the system works very fast, it can identify potentially harmful videos before anyone gets to see them.

However, human moderators will now have the final say when it comes to removing videos from the platform. Machines will no longer have full autonomy to perform this operation on YouTube.

So, how does it affect marketers?

For one, you no longer have to worry that the AI moderation system will pull your content for no reason. Also, you could submit an appeal if your video was removed between April and June.

There’s a chance that YouTube will reinstate your content.

Read More: YouTube Launches a Short-Form Video Experience Called Shorts

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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