YouTube Updates Cyberbullying Policy

ThirdParent YoutubeGood news and bad news for YouTube users – especially young users. The video network has updated its harassment and cyberbullying guidelines, and they are much more strict than the previous version.

The good news here is that it’s time for YouTube to take a tougher stand. Cyberbullying is more prevalent on YouTube than most parents realize, in our experience, and exists in two forms: cyberbullying in the comments section, which is rampant, and original videos that call out an individual in a less than kind way. The latter type of video certainly exists, but the rules seem like they will be awkward to implement fairly since there is a fine line between satire (which society mostly tolerates) and harassment or cyberbullying.

The new rules, in their entirety:

Harassment may include:

  • Abusive videos, comments, messages

  • Revealing someone’s personal information

  • Maliciously recording someone without their consent

  • Deliberately posting content in order to humiliate someone

  • Making hurtful and negative comments/videos about another person

  • Unwanted sexualization, which encompasses sexual harassment or sexual bullying in any form

  • Incitement to harass other users or creators

The bad part of this change is that some satirical accounts are already having videos deleted. In one example, YouTuber RiceGum posted a video for his 2.3 million followers in which he criticized the Instagram account of a 10-year old girl, the daughter of a rock star. In the video, he said:

“[she] wears “quite a bit of makeup for her age,” and sarcastically claims, “Wow, they grow up so fast, already learning how to, you know, arch their back a little bit, kinda, you know, poke out the behind area.” The comedian also notes that Instagram’s Terms of Use state that one must be at least 13 years old to have an account.”

That video has been removed.

We are all for social networks policing cyberbullying, but we hope that YouTube can do a good job responding to genuine harassment without stifling too much comedy or creativity.



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