YouTube Allows Ads Spreading Disinformation on India’s Election

This news has been read 1131 times!

YouTube’s approval of numerous ads promoting voter suppression and incitement to violence ahead of India’s upcoming election has ignited widespread concern following a new investigation by rights groups Global Witness and Access Now, exclusively shared with TIME. Scheduled in seven phases between April 19 and June 1, India’s election is deemed one of the world’s largest democratic events, with high stakes for incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu nationalist agenda. This scrutiny comes amidst a global election year, highlighting the pivotal role of social media platforms in combatting election disinformation, particularly following significant job cuts across the industry.

The investigation tested YouTube’s ability to curtail disinformation by submitting 48 ads containing election-related content banned by YouTube rules, across Hindi, Telugu, and English languages. Shockingly, YouTube approved all ads after a 24-hour review, prompting concerns about its efficacy in safeguarding the electoral process. Critics argue that this failure reflects a disregard for the global majority and underscores the urgent need for improved oversight within YouTube.

Responding to the report, a Google spokesperson defended the company’s global enforcement of policies, asserting that none of the ads ran on their systems and disputed the methodology of the investigation. However, the findings underscore a concerning pattern of inconsistency in tackling election disinformation, particularly in regions like India. With YouTube’s vast reach in India and its lucrative advertising model, the report authors urge urgent action to address these systemic vulnerabilities, including a thorough evaluation of ad approval processes and increased resources for trust and safety teams to tackle content in local languages. As the Indian election draws nearer, the pressure mounts for YouTube to bolster its efforts in combating disinformation and upholding democratic integrity.

This news has been read 1131 times!

Related Articles

Back to top button

Advt Blocker Detected

Kindly disable the Ad blocker

Verified by MonsterInsights