The official channel for TalkRadio has been deleted from YouTube, and says it is waiting for an explanation.
The video-sharing platform operated by Google has not yet commented on the elimination of national talk radio or stated the basis for the action.
TalkRadio said it was “urgently” awaiting a clarification in a statement posted on Twitter – in the midst of rumors that the shutdown might be due to a breach of YouTube rules regarding coronavirus misinformation.
YouTube – A talkRADIO clarification.
Listen online or live on DAB https://t.co/mcJAlihYJmWatch live on Facebook https://t.co/VPlZPtbi9mWatch live on Twitter https://t.co/5JccfkV81n pic.twitter.com/GWlhqjZYkiki
-TalkRADIO January 5, 2021 (@talkRADIO)
The statement reads, “We are urgently awaiting a detailed response from Google/YouTube about the nature of the violation that led to our channel being removed from its platform,”
TalkRadio is a broadcaster authorised and controlled by Ofcom and has strict editorial controls in place to ensure a balanced discussion.
“We regularly interrogate government data and we have on-the-ground checks, use verifiable sources and give space to a careful selection of voices and opinions.”
YouTube was used by the UK-owned news broadcaster to live stream shows and share excerpts from its programming.
The message was shown to anyone who wanted to reach the talkRadio website on Tuesday, “This account has been terminated for violating YouTube’s community guidelines.”
The guidelines of the video platform state that it does not accept “content that disseminates medical misinformation that contradicts medical information provided by local health authorities or the World Health Organization (WHO) about Covid-19.”
“Since Election Day, Donald Trump has issued “19 Twitter alerts” in tweets
“Silkie Carlo, director of the Big Brother Watch Civil Liberties and Digital Rights Group, said, “The termination of talkRadio by YouTube is evidence that big-tech censorship is out of reach if proof is needed.
“The kind of thing you see in China is this chilling assault on a broadcaster. It’s no accident that talkRadio frequently hosts government mismanagement critics, nor is it a coincidence that under its “online damage” policy, the government is forcing big tech platforms to step up censorship.
“This is an attack on legal free speech and should be urgently reviewed.”
Increased pressure has recently been placed on Internet sites such as Twitter and Facebook to tackle the dissemination of misinformation.
False statements and conspiracy theories about the virus itself and vaccinations produced in response, in particular, have led to Twitter banners, with tweets also warning that the claims are’ controversial.’
For rule breaches related to coronavirus misinformation, YouTube has already taken action against other users.