X

YouTube Takes Down Thousands Of Channels Deemed Part of Chinese Influence Operation

March 9th, 2021 15:06

UK media is report­ing that YouTube has tak­en down thou­sands of chan­nels deemed part of Chi­nese and Russ­ian state coor­di­nat­ed influ­ence oper­a­tions. Accord­ing to an infosecurity-magazine.com arti­cle:

Feb­ru­ary 17, 2021  YouTube has tak­en down almost 3000 chan­nels and accounts deemed to part of sep­a­rate Chi­nese and Russ­ian state coor­di­nat­ed influ­ence oper­a­tions. The vast major­i­ty of the work involved the removal of 2946 YouTube chan­nels deemed to be part of a Chi­nese influ­ence oper­a­tion, accord­ing to Google’s Threat Analy­sis Group direc­tor, Shane Hunt­ley. “These chan­nels most­ly uploaded spam­my con­tent in Chi­nese about music, enter­tain­ment and lifestyle,” he explained in a TAG bul­letin for Q1 2021. “A very small sub­set uploaded con­tent in Chi­nese and Eng­lish about the US response to COVID-19 and grow­ing US polit­i­cal divisions.”

Read the rest here.

Last August, Google delet­ed more than 2,500 YouTube chan­nels tied to Chi­na as part of its effort to weed out dis­in­for­ma­tion on the video-shar­ing plat­form. A few weeks lat­er, YouTube dis­abled anoth­er 210 chan­nels appear­ing to engage in a coor­di­nat­ed influ­ence oper­a­tion around the Hong Kong protests. The Chi­nese gov­ern­ment blocked YouTube in 2009 after Bei­jing denounced footage appear­ing to show secu­ri­ty forces beat­ing Tibetans in Lhasa last year as “a lie.”

Past Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ing on Chi­nese influ­ence oper­a­tions include:

  • In Jan­u­ary 2021, we rec­om­mend­ed a study on China’s use of infor­ma­tion manip­u­la­tion in region­al and glob­al competition.
  • In Novem­ber 2020, we rec­om­mend­ed a study on China’s Twit­ter influ­ence operations.
  • In Octo­ber 2020, we report­ed that Face­book dis­man­tled a pro-Chi­na dis­in­for­ma­tion network.