In a discussion with influencer-turned-interviewer Anthony Padilla, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki addressed concerns of “rewarding” harassment and toxicity egged on by drama channels.
It’s not uncommon to see content creators across the internet complaining about YouTube’s constantly-shifting policies and treatment of traditionally “taboo” topics — but one of the most prominent issues that’s come to light is harassment and slander campaigns.
YouTube has a rich profile of drama channels, who often report on the goings-on between high-profile influencers and other trending topics… but some of these channels have been criticized for appearing to encourage harassment against other creators.
Longtime YouTuber Anthony Padilla brought up this concern during a June 23 interview with YouTube’s CEO, Susan Wojcicki, who claimed that the platform is working to “discourage” toxicity brought about by inflammatory drama channels.
“One of the things that we saw is that people were repeatedly attacking someone, but in a small way,” she began.
“The one person doesn’t feel like the one jab is contributing to this much bigger damage,” Padilla interjected.
“That’s why we actually then started to implement policy around that, and have a variety of different steps, whether it’s demonetization or having a strike, or losing a channel, ultimately,” Wojcicki replied. “We don’t want to see creator-on-creator harassment.”
(Topic begins at 9:11)
As for when drama channels actually express legitimate concerns over potentially harmful or illegal activity, Wojcicki claimed that YouTube does “remove [the offending parties] from the platform” if the allegations are found to be true.
“These cases take many different forms, and some people are accused but they’re actually innocent, or they say they didn’t do it but they [turn out to be] guilty. …we’re trying to make sure that we are not having any kind of nexus or connection to illegal activity in terms of things that have happened on the platform.”
Ultimately, Padilla’s interview with Wojcicki revealed one thing in striking clarity: YouTube’s inner workings are far more complicated than some critics make it out to be, and the platform does make efforts to listen to its creators on important topics… even if it doesn’t always seem that way.