On Monday morning, a discussion began to erupt on Crypto Twitter regarding a potential Youtube blackout of industry channels. First, only a few channels were purportedly affected; Canadian Bitcoin educator “BTCSessions” and pro-crypto finance Youtube channel Chris Dunn reported that a number of their videos were taken down due to “harmful and dangerous” content.
At first, few gave the issue notice, for it could have easily been a minor glitch on the side of the video hosting platform. But by mid-afternoon and evening on Monday, other crypto-centric Youtubers — including names like popular Bitcoin price analyst “Sunny Decree” and crypto programmer-turned-educator “Ivan on Tech,” both of which have tens of thousands of subscribers — had seen a number of their videos taken down as well.
The thing is, as of the time of writing this, it’s getting worse. On Christmas Eve, just minutes ago as of the time of writing this, a smattering of other top channels that publish cryptocurrency and blockchain-related content were slammed as well, crushed under the pressure of seeming censorship.
Youtube Takes Down Array of Crypto Channels
Just minutes ago as of the time of writing this, the Youtube strike hammer has come down again. This time, actor and crypto educator Omar Bham (who goes by “Crypt0” on Youtube); “Nugget’s News,” run by Alex Saunders; and Michael “Boxmining” Gu, a cryptocurrency media creator and investor were hit.
Saunders was hit the hardest, claiming that 50 of the videos on his “Nugget’s News” channel were removed. The crazy part, “most of these weren’t even crypto videos,” he explained in an impassioned tweet on the matter. He continued:
“Tutorials, explainers, educational videos, Australian housing market updates, economics & negative interest rates [all removed]. What a way to spend #Xmas. Absolutely gutted ?”
Michael Gu was struck by Youtube over a video about “crypto censorship in South Korea,” which is rather ironic.
With these new reports, more information about the context of this action from Youtube has been revealed. Apparently, a majority of the videos that have been taken down by Youtube were promoting “certain regulated goods and services” — a list that includes items like alcohol, explosives, human organs, nicotine, firearms, and much more.
This is notable as “cryptocurrency” is not mentioned on the list, though “counterfeit documents or currency” and “online gambling casinos” are. The latest strikes could imply that Google does not recognize digital assets as real money and that it sees exchanges and other Bitcoin services as “online gambling casinos.”
What’s the Alternative?
Of course, many haven’t taken kindly to this latest purge; after all, Youtube is one of the crypto industry’s favorite platforms aside from Twitter and Telegram. Mati Greenspan, the founder of QuantumEconomics, even went as far as to say that to protest “Google’s new, unexpected, and unexplained censorship of crypto content, I will be boycotting Youtube until further notice.” Others seem to be following Greenspan’s lead.
The question then remains: is there an alternative to Youtube that will allow Bitcoin content to thrive unfettered?
Right now, it’s hard to say. Though, as put best by Placeholder’s Chris Burniske, “violations like these […] will push suppliers and consumers away from platforms and towards protocols,” likely touching on the movement to decentralize the Internet, even a site like Youtube.
Youtube hasn’t commented on this recent debacle, nor can NewsBTC find any content updates or guidelines that mention cryptocurrency or related technologies by name.
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