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How To Fact Check YouTube Videos!


It is a commonly known fact that YouTube is perhaps the biggest video sharing platform on the internet without billions of hour’s worth of content and millions of content creators. This also means that with so much content being uploaded on the platform each day, it becomes extremely difficult to ensure the authenticity and credibility of the content. Luckily, YouTube has its own strict guidelines to prevent fake videos especially about sensitive and controversial topics such as COVID-19 and more. Here’s how Face Check works on YouTube.

- Updated: 29th Jun 2020, 22:14 IST

Fake news and conspiracy theories are common on a platform like YouTube that processes several thousands of hours of footage every day. This issue was more noticed in recent times with the growth of Social Media, instant messaging and other forms of video journalism through websites like YouTube and Vimeo that allow any users to go online and upload content of their choice. To reduce the negative impact of such instances, YouTube has added a fact-check panel to the search results and the watch page.

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This is even more important during the pandemic as a lot of videos are maligned to convey information that isn’t true. The fact-check panel will appear above and below the search results for some topics such as “COVID-19 is a Bioweapon” and other search results that might appear to be true but are not. The fact check panels will mainly appear for searches that are borderline fake or conspiracy theories with no credibility.

According to the official page, this is in response to the coronavirus disease and that users might see info panels that feature links to learn more about the pandemic. At some places, the users will see info on the COVID-19 pandemic in their local languages with links to the local sources such as Health Ministries and the Center for Disease Control. According to Google, these will be pure facts and not be maligned by the opinions or perspectives of the various people and their expression in the videos uploaded to the platform.

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For now, the feature has been rolled out to countries including India, the United States, Brazil, South Korea, Germany, United Kingdom, Spain, and more. YouTube has also commented saying that they will be rolling out to more regions in the future and for now users will see links from WHO, CDC, local health authorities, and other reliable sources. Given the workforce restrictions during the pandemic, YouTube had to resort to AI and machine learning algorithms to identify and moderate content on the platform.

YouTube has also commented that due to the moderation being performed by machines, the action is taken immediately but the appeals are impacted in terms of response time. The chief product office of YouTube commented saying that they are able to manage this process for now and that there will be improvements in the future as the algorithms get even better at their task.

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Conspiracy theory or a piece of fake news can do a lot of harm and in a long term even tarnishes the credibility of YouTube as a platform, the impact of these can be seen in a long run as users develop distrust towards a platform which might result in people not believing even the genuine content. The YouTube fact check panels help to ensure that users are aware of the facts and not guided wrongly by videos that might convey otherwise.


Also read: Tech News


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Highlights of the Story

  • YouTube is the biggest platform for sharing videos on the internet and several thousands of hours of content is uploaded to the platform each day
  • It is extremely difficult to ensure that the data in the videos are authentic and not controversial
  • YouTube uses fact-checkers to ensure that their site does not hold videos that are not credible, especially for controversial topics

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