Ellis says that she has had “around 40 videos” taken off the platform in Restricted Mode and that fellow LGBT+ YouTuber Calum McSwiggan had “every single video on his channel, bar one” one taken off.
When it’s working according to its alleged objective, “Restricted Mode” is supposed to “use community flagging, age-restrictions, and other signals to identify and filter out potentially inappropriate content”, and is a feature that must be manually turned on.
The feature appeared to block many videos by LGBTQ YouTubers, regardless of the content of the clips.
Melanie Murphy accused the filter of making her “appear straight”.
Creators, including Rowan Ellis and Tyler Oakley noticed that videos with LGBTQ themes were being blocked.
At issue is YouTube’s “restricted” designation, which lets parents, schools and libraries filter content that may be considered inappropriate for users under 18.
WHAT A TEAM. Now, how about we have a watch of Grace Helbig reviewing some celeb style?
Some YouTubers were shocked to find out that most or all of their videos had been flagged under this restriction, despite containing no sexualized or controversial content.
Videos that show adults engaging in “activities that have a high risk of injury or death” may also be age-restricted. Restricted Mode is available in all languages, but due to potential cultural sensitivities, the quality may vary.
The feature is created to filter out inappropriate content from your feed and uses signals like flags from users as well as age restrictions on videos. YouTube has put itself in charge of deciding what videos are objectionable or inappropriate.
British YouTube star Neonfiona has revealed that her video: “Coming Out To My Family & Other Bi Stuff” has been filtered out even though it does not mention sex.
In response, YouTube issued a vague statement that did not refer directly to the controversy and did not answer why it was blocking particular videos from LGBTQ creators.
“YouTube’s own equality campaign is restricted, which is probably the weirdest part of everything”, Rizzi says.
“We are so proud to represent LGBTQ+ voices on our platform”, YouTube’s statement read.
The restrictions even affected Tyler Oakley, one of the most popular and visible LGBT creators on the platform.
Some examples of restricted videos are The Girlfriend TEST ft Riley Jay Dennis, What People Say When You Come Out As Bisexual and Do LGBT+ Australians Want Gay Marriage?