On Friday, YouTube announced that it will update its policy to permit content that challenges the legitimacy of the 2020 US presidential election and other elections. The platform will also share any claims regarding election fraud.
“The ability to openly discuss political ideas, even those that are controversial or based on unproven assumptions, is the essence of a functioning democratic society, especially in the midst of election season,” the social networking site wrote.
YouTube had begun removing such content in December 2020, following allegations by former President Donald Trump and his allies that fraud dominated the 2020 presidential race and prior to the events of January 6, 2021.
“The time has come to reassess the effects of this policy in today’s changing landscape,” the site added in a statement.
And the Google subsidiary continued, “At the present time, we have found that when such content is deleted, and this deletion helps reduce some misleading information and may also have the unintended effect of reducing political speech without reducing the risk of violence or any other harm in the real world.”
The statement stated that they will no longer remove content that reports false claims of fraud or errors or that discusses widespread glitches in previous US presidential elections, as they have started the 2024 campaigns.
The policies against electoral misinformation are still active. This includes content that misleads people about the voting details, encourages interference in the democratic process, makes false claims that could discourage voting, or contests the validity of mail-in voting.
YouTube stated that they are aware of citizens’ commitment to upholding the democratic process and they share the same initiative. They will continue to monitor and make necessary adjustments, as they did during the 2020 and 2022 elections. They have an election-focused team to monitor developments in real-time. Moreover, in the forthcoming months, they will share additional details about their strategy for the 2024 election.