A group of YouTubers African Americans is suing YouTube and its parent company, Google, for discrimination against their videos and their race. The lawsuit alleges that YouTube uses its automated tools to “restrict, censor, and denigrate” black creators, affecting their subscriber base and their income. The lawsuit alleges that this happens while racist and hate speech is allowed to make money on the site even though it has been tagged for breaking YouTube rules.
The lawsuit comes at a time when the United States is experiencing the protests that followed the death of George Floyd at the hands of the police. YouTube is one of the largest technology companies to make large donations to social justice initiatives and to issue public statements in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
After announcing a $ 100 million fund to support black video creator youtube has many explanations, according to the lawsuit, which adds that YouTube and Google must “invest their money in stopping the racist practices that plague the YouTube platform.”
The plaintiffs include YouTubers associated with the Lisa Cabrera channel, which has more than 20 million views; Lisa’s View channel, which has some 11 million views; The True Royal Family and True Royal channels, which in total have 3.4 million views; and three channels related to creator Carmen CaBoom, which has some 500,000 views in total. All the creators who are suing YouTube claim that the company has unfairly removed or archived their videos, affecting their income.
YouTube said Thursday, June 18, that it is reviewing the lawsuit. The company said it allows anyone to post videos that follow the site’s policies and guidelines, which it observes and executes in a neutral and consistent manner, according to the company. YouTube wants its service to include a variety of voices and perspectives, the company said.
The lawsuit, filed Tuesday, June 16, in a California court, accuses YouTube of “intentional and systematic racial discrimination” by restricting and blocking YouTubers blacks based on their racial identity. The lawsuit also alleges that YouTube is making profits from hate speech videos.
The lawsuit also accuses YouTube of embedding metadata in the videos of the YouTubers that allows its automated system to filter the videos based on race, identity, and point of view of the creator. The videos of the YouTubers They are suing the company have been restricted, eliminated, limited ad revenue, or completely demonetized.
YouTube said on June 18 that its automated systems are not designed to identify the race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation of its creators and viewers.