March 18, 2018

YouTube plans 'information cues' to combat hoaxes

14 March 2018, 07:44 | Lena Norman

YouTube CEO Susan

YouTube CEO Susan

Susan Wojcicki, speaking on stage at the South by Southwest Conference in Austin, Texas, displayed a mock-up of the new feature, which are called information cues.

"Our goal is to start with a list of conspiracies around the internet where there's a lot of active discussion", she said, according to Bloomberg. The feature named - information cues, will be incorporated into the platform in the coming weeks.

YouTube to add "information cues" to videos that deal with conspiracy theories and similar controversial topics.

For instance, there are conspiracy theories that claim that the moon landing was a hoax.

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YouTube will help combat that by linking to information about the topic found on Wikipedia.

Most notably, last month a video suggesting that one of the high-school students who survived the mass killing in Parkland, Fla., David Hogg, was an actor hired by gun-control advocates briefly became YouTube's No. 1 trending video.

Wojcicki used several examples, including videos about the moon landing and chemtrails when describing the type of content that would get Wikipedia links.

YouTube intends to present an alternative viewpoint to videos questioning science or describing conspiracies about events such as the USA moon landing. But it generally provides a more neutral, empirical approach to understanding conspiracies than the more sensationalist videos that appear on YouTube. It's worth noting that Wikipedia is also an open platform and is subject to bad actors manipulating information, although the nonprofit org's website by design includes community-based controls to edit out falsehoods.

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