Google-owned video platform YouTube has disabled the comments on “tens of millions of videos” featuring minors, in an attempt to curb sexual predators on the platform.
“Over the past week, we disabled comments from tens of millions of videos that could be subject to predatory behavior. These efforts are focused on videos featuring young minors and we will continue to identify videos at risk over the next few months,” YouTube declared. “Over the next few months, we will be broadening this action to suspend comments on videos featuring young minors and videos featuring older minors that could be at risk of attracting predatory behavior.”
“A small number of creators will be able to keep comments enabled on these types of videos. These channels will be required to actively moderate their comments, beyond just using our moderation tools, and demonstrate a low risk of predatory behavior,” the company continued. “We will work with them directly and our goal is to grow this number over time as our ability to catch violative comments continues to improve.”
YouTube also claimed to have “been working on an even more effective classifier, that will identify and remove predatory comments.”
“No form of content that endangers minors is acceptable on YouTube, which is why we have terminated certain channels that attempt to endanger children in any way. Videos encouraging harmful and dangerous challenges targeting any audience are also clearly against our policies,” YouTube concluded. “We will continue to take action when creators violate our policies in ways that blatantly harm the broader user and creator community. Please continue to flag these to us.”
Last week, YouTube faced heavy criticism from content creators after it claimed that “inappropriate comments” left by other users on videos could result in the video becoming demonetized.
Content creators pointed out to YouTube that they could have their income taken away if trolls, or critics, decided to purposefully leave “inappropriate” comments on their videos.
YouTube launched its comments system changes following reports of many sexual predators on the platform, who were found to be making sexual comments on videos featuring children.
The reports of YouTube’s pedophile problem led to several major advertisers pulling their ads, including McDonald’s, Nestlé, and Epic Games, and forced YouTube to take action.