YouTube tagging some health videos amid disinformation backlash
YouTube said Monday that it plans to “highlight” videos from credible health sources and add information boards to some videos.
YouTube said Monday it would promote more credible health resources and tag certain videos to steer viewers away from the misinformation, which has been prevalent in the service for more than a year.
The delayed action comes after the company faced questions about harboring false information about Covid-19 and vaccines as cases and deaths start to rise again. Last week, the US Surgeon General called out tech companies for their role in hosting fake news and urged companies to take a number of steps, including sharing data with researchers.
The Google-owned company said it would “highlight” more videos with authoritative sources when a user searches for specific health topics. It will also add “information boards” that display a link to credible sources recommended by the National Academy of Medicine. The effectiveness of the tool, however, will depend on the willingness of viewers to click on it. Experts have repeatedly doubt similar tools the company added to election videos last year.
“This is our first step towards identifying and naming authoritative health sources on YouTube,” said Dr Garth Graham, director and global head of health and public health partnerships at YouTube, in blog post.
The Surgeon General of the United States report cited a study by the Journal of Medical Internet Research, which stated that “Social media platforms such as YouTube are hotbeds for the spread of vaccine misinformation. “
The results of the study indicate that “viewers are more likely to encounter anti-vaccine videos through direct browsing from an anti-vaccine video than through targeted browsing. will be more likely to lead to more anti-vaccine videos. “
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