In the aftermath of the Christchurch mosque shootings in New Zealand, YouTube is facing a severe backlash over accusations of profiting from its 'Super Chat' feature by encouraging hate speech on its platform.
YouTube introduced Super Chat back in 2017. It allows Super Chat allows content creators to interact with their fans during the live chat. Fans can pay for Super Chats for minimum $5 to boost the visibility of their comments within the live chat. YouTube keeps a 30 per cent chunk and the rest of the sum goes to YouTubers.
According to one report, Austrian activist Martin Sellner is earning a “disproportionately high” amount of money on YouTube through its Super Chat feature. Sellner, who is a part of the alt-right movement, is currently under investigation for potential links to the Christchurch mosque shooter.
According to The Times report, one video highlighted a comment if the alleged perpetrator of the New Zealand attack was a Mossad agent. Daily Mail Online reported another comment: "What's your take on the fact that the murderer did not once mention Zionist influence in America or Europe?"
This is how YouTube maintains that its Super Chat is feature complies with the company's community guidelines to prohibit hateful content:
"Our products are platforms for free expression. But we don't support content that promotes or condones violence against individuals or groups based on race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, nationality, veteran status, or sexual orientation/gender identity, or whose primary purpose is inciting hatred on the basis of these core characteristics. This can be a delicate balancing act, but if the primary purpose is to attack a protected group, the content crosses the line."
In a statement provided to Daily Mail Online, this is what YouTube's spokesperson had to say:
"We do not allow videos or comments that incite hatred on YouTube and work hard to remove content that violates our policies quickly, using a combination of human flagging and review and smart detection technology. We're making progress in our fight to prevent the abuse of our services, including hiring more people and investing in advanced machine learning technology. We know there's always more to do here and we're committed to getting better."
Recently, Facebook decided to pull the plug on posts praising, supporting and representing white nationalism and white separatism from Facebook and Instagram.