YouTube Continues Conspiracy Crackdown With Fact-Checking Cards On Search Results

By 03/08/2019
YouTube Continues Conspiracy Crackdown With Fact-Checking Cards On Search Results

YouTube is taking further action to fight the spread of conspiracy theories.

A new feature — which is currently being piloted in India for search queries in both English and Hindi — will showcase fact-checking cards when people search for sensitive topics, BuzzFeed reports. YouTube told the outlet that the tool will roll out globally, though no dates have been set.

The so-called Information Panels — derived from verified fact-checking partners — will comprise boxes of text that debunk conspiracy theories, and will appear whenever users query topics that are prone to misinformation, YouTube told BuzzFeed. BuzzFeed notes that conspiratorial videos can still appear in search results. Information Panels differ from Information Cues — another feature that video giant launched last March to combat misinformation, which furnish Wikipedia-sourced info within individual videos.

“As part of our ongoing efforts to build a better news experience on YouTube, we are expanding our information panels to bring fact checks from eligible publishers to YouTube,” a spokesperson said.

While YouTube has partnered with Wikipedia on fact-checking in the U.S., in India the company is working with about six fact-checking partners — many of which are also collaborating with Facebook ahead of India’s national elections this spring.

YouTube has long contended with the spread of conspiratorial content amid allegations that it serves as a hub for the flat earth and anti-vaccination communities. In January, YouTube said that it would alter its algorithm so that conspiracy videos would no longer be recommended — including videos promoting miracle cures for serious illnesses, flat earth content, and clips making false claims about historic events like 9/11 and the Holocaust.

You can check out one of the Information Panels, courtesy of BuzzFeed, below: