YouTube: Our Fiercest Enemy in the War on Terror

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Joe Lieberman, utilizing his role at the top of the Homeland Security Committee for a change, commanded YouTube to cull "Islamist terrorist" content.

Lieberman asked the company not only to remove existing content but also identify changes that Google plans to make to YouTube's community guidelines and explain how it plans to enforce the guidelines. Lieberman said removing such content should be "a straightforward task since so many of the Islamist terrorist organizations brand their material with logos or icons identifying their provenance."

YouTube's response: Delete videos that break existing rules but "refuse to remove all videos mentioning or featuring these groups without consideration of whether the videos were legal, nonviolent or non-hate speech videos."

"While we respect and understand his views, YouTube encourages free speech and defends everyone's right to express unpopular points of view," the company said. "We believe that YouTube is a richer and more relevant platform for users precisely because it hosts a diverse range of views, and rather than stifle debate, we allow our users to view all acceptable content and make up their own minds." 

The statement thanked Lieberman for alerting the company last week of several videos which violated the company's community guidelines and that have subsequently been removed. However, the statement said that "most of the videos, which did not contain violent or hate speech content, were not removed because they do not violate our Community Guidelines.

I like the policy, but I'm not sure it's actually YouTube's policy. They've absolutely banned users for publishing videos with a preponderance of hate speech, like anti-Semite Frank Weltner. I'm pretty sure they've banned "the Trash Man," the masked creep who breathes heavily about infecting girls with HIV. YouTube thus far has proven more censorship-resilient than, say, Yahoo, but if they keep getting leaned on by Lieberman, or some fellow travellers with a similar amount of free time, I'm pessimistic about how absolutist they can be here.

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  1. If someone wants to kill me I would rather know about it ahead of time so that I can prepare. Youtube is providing a service to the Department of Homeland Security. Like the old After School Special commercials used to say: “The more you know . . . “

  2. Why can’t he just go back to “investigating” breakfast cereal prices and leave normal people alone? Why do the people of my state like him so much? I don’t get it.

  3. I guess one good thing about the Dems walloping the Reps in this year’s election, they’ll have a majority without Lieberman and can kick him to the curb. Then, unless he flips parties, he’ll be all alone in the wilderness.

  4. Wow, sounds similar to that Sen. Obama plan to re-overregulate “the airwaves” for content.

    Counting down until the familiar “government solution” voices trot over here to tell us why Sen. Lieberman is wrong but Sen. Obama is right.

    Will have something to do with ‘fairness’ and ‘freeness’. While all of us who truly do like fairness and freeness can tell you in a second why they are both wrong.

  5. “Why do the people of my state like him so much? I don’t get it.”

    Lieberman is the Democratic Party’s answer to John McCain. He is, love him or hate him, a maverick.

  6. He is, love him or hate him, a maverick.

    Calling Matt Welch! Calling Matt Welch! 🙂

  7. He is, love him or hate him, a maverick.

    I hate the use of that term merely for a guy who bucks his party. Lieberman is the worst possible combo: super-nanny-statist socialist douchebag AND warmongering PATRIOT ACT-supporting hawk.

  8. “super-nanny-statist socialist douchebag AND warmongering PATRIOT ACT-supporting hawk.”

    Like I said, he is the Democratic Party’s answer to JOhn McCain. Bu I think the term maverick fits, he is, after all, an unbranded calf or yearling.

    http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/maverick?view=uk

  9. Episiarch,

    Humm, yea, that is a bad combination, but I dislike the nannystate surrender monkeys more than the combination you gave. Althought I do dislike the true warmongers, I am reading your use as being mearly hawkish.

  10. PIRS,

    I believe we need a ruling from Mr. Welch.

  11. I only hear about Lieberman in the context of Israel/terror/homeland security. In these areas, he’s a total party hack who just happens to be in the wrong party.

    “Maverick”, to me at least, requires that you be original and distinct from any party line. I see nothing original in Lieberman. Cartoonish extremeness doesn’t count.

  12. Agreed Episiarch.

    As another libertarian Nutmegger, Lieberman is everything I despise in a politician.

  13. “”Maverick”, to me at least, requires that you be original and distinct from any party line. I see nothing original in Lieberman. Cartoonish extremeness doesn’t count.”

    Lieberman does not hold a standard set of political views for either of the two major parties. One of the reasons Gore chose him for VP was in hopes of attracting some “moderates”.

  14. Please do nto misunderstand, I am no Lieberman fan but I recognize he does not fit the mould of either the Republicans or the Democrats.

  15. McCain / Welch 2008

  16. I only hear about Lieberman in the context of Israel/terror/homeland security. In these areas, he’s a total party hack who just happens to be in the wrong party.

    Not to summon any bad spirits or anything, but I think the fact that Lieberman is an Orthodox Jew informs his thinking on these matters more than any party orthodoxy.

  17. Like the old After School Special commercials used to say: “The more you know . . . “

    “Canada sucks!”

  18. The murder of his family members by anti-Semites may have something to do with it

  19. YouTube is a private organization, I respect their right to put out whatever product they wish. If doing so means banning hate speech to please their patrons, I would think Reason would support this. Freedom of Speech applies to the government, the market can curtail which speech is promoted or facilitated by private organizations

  20. Episiarch–

    I’ll trade you Hillary AND Chuck Schumer for Dodd and Lieberman. Interested?

  21. Like the old After School Special commercials used to say: “The more you know . . . “

    That is such 9/10 thinking.

    😉

  22. “We believe that YouTube is a richer and more relevant platform for users precisely because it hosts a diverse range of views, and rather than stifle debate, we allow our users to view all acceptable content and make up their own minds.”

    For anyone who’s even remotely familiar with the general intellectual level of YouTube comments, the above is extremely funny.

  23. ‘The more you know’ was an NBC catchphrase used for this two decades mostly in primetime, and some sat mornings, but not ‘after school.’

    However, GI Joe used ‘and *now* you know,’ with the countersign ‘knowing is half the battle.’

  24. Someone should command youtube to cull Lieberman.

  25. Please do nto misunderstand, I am no Lieberman fan but I recognize he does not fit the mould of either the Republicans or the Democrats.

    Uhmm, what?

    he fits the mold perfectly. He is a true GOPer/authoritarian and with regards to foreign policy and civil liberties, and he is a terrible nanny-stater when it comes to social policy and free wheeling spender when it comes to domestic policy.

    He is Tipper Gore and Douglas Feith all rolled up into one gooey disgusting ball. He is a living caricature the worst elements of both parties.

    I guess one good thing about the Dems walloping the Reps in this year’s election, they’ll have a majority without Lieberman and can kick him to the curb. Then, unless he flips parties, he’ll be all alone in the wilderness.

    And yet Harry Reid continues to insist that regardless of what happens in the next election, Lieberman will not lost any chairmanships or be ostracized from the caucus.

  26. I’ll trade you Hillary AND Chuck Schumer for Dodd and Lieberman. Interested?

    Hell no. Point taken.

  27. I, for one, would like to see a reduction of kookspeak on the floor of the Senate. Youtube never authorized the invasion of any sovereign nations.

  28. There seems to be no extreme that Lieberman will not mark in the pursuit of what he thinks is good for the Israeli state, including sacrificing American lives and money.

    Presently he is part of the full court press to have our military attack Iran. Only a determined protest may stop this tragedy.
    Contact your representative and senators and tell them not to allow an attack on Iran-not to vote for it and if the Bush administration attacks Iran sans congressional approval, to proceed with impeachment.

    http://www.visi.com/juan/congress/

  29. Multiculturalism: doesn’t work, each culture needs its own space.

    YouTube: owned by Google, freedom is an illusion.

  30. Antiwar.com is having a fundraiser. They are both the most frequented anti-war, and most frequented libertarian site extant. Antiwar.com is the foremost opponent of the big government warfare state, and a force for peace and liberty. Please help them. We need antiwar.com now more than ever.

    http://www.antiwar.com/

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