Indian Ink
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Indian Ink

YouTube is dancing to China’s tune

Instead of being taken for a ride by the CCP, Google should create a YouTube China for all videos uploaded from China

Photo by Kaboompics .com from Pexels

China’s CCP (Chinese Communist Party) has figured out how to cripple the freedom of speech of the free world using a simple but blatant tactic of double standards. This is deeply ingrained into the CCP’s DNA. It won’t allow Western apps like Instagram in China but protests loudly when India bans Chinese apps like TikTok. It won’t allow Westerners to even visit Chinese universities but acts pained when asked to remove its politically active Confucius Institutes from Western universities.

Coming back, outsiders are not allowed to create content for China’s internet as the CCP doesn’t believe in freedom of speech. Yet, the two-faced CCP has the colossal cheek to invoke its right to freedom of speech to post whatever content it wishes on the global internet. What’s worse is the CCP misuses the internet’s democratic safeguards to drown out genuine voices on the net.

To get a broad perspective of what the world is up against on YouTube, let’s start with what the CCP desperately doesn’t want the world to see, like for instance this video on the vanishing Muslims of China.

Heads, China wins - you are not allowed on the Chinese internet

As China is ruled by the totalitarian CCP regime, it likes to control what its citizens think. They shouldn’t know there is a world outside China where people are allowed to freely express their opinion, elect their own government, and enjoy a free life. So international sites like YouTube, Facebook, Google, Twitter are not allowed on the Chinese internet.

Instead, China has its own equivalent of these websites, which paint a picture of China as the greatest place on earth to live in, unlike the rest of the world which is full of poverty and crime, and so on. It goes without saying that criticism of the CCP is forbidden on the Chinese internet.

Tails, you lose - China is allowed on the global internet

Despite prohibiting free speech in China, the CCP shamelessly claims the right of free speech to say whatever it wishes on the global internet. Actually, I can live with that, as most of what the CCP says is farcical, amateurish nonsense that only a child will believe. But here’s where the CCP gets crafty, and employs a 3-point attack to hijack YouTube.

The CCP knows that even a mildly discerning observer will not believe their crap. That doesn’t concern them so much as preventing Chinese citizens from seeing videos that tell the true story of China.

So the CCP is using a simple loophole in YouTube algorithms to do this. If thousands of people complain a video is bad, YouTube will either take it down or demonetize it. Demonetizing is as bad as taking down the video. It means the YouTube video can’t earn money for its creator. But what makes it worse is YouTube also doesn’t earn money from the video so they stop promoting it, and that video becomes virtually invisible on YouTube.

How the CCP does this trickery is by enlisting a paid army of thousands of trolls called Wumao who falsely flag (as violent or obscene) any video that says the truth about China. As I explained, YouTube’s algorithms fall for this trick, and the video is removed or demonetized from YouTube.

Algorithms and bots have been a blessing to the world in many ways, but not if a crooked player like the CCP has figured out how to game the system.

The CCP’s second tactic is to make it harder for people to chance upon these factual videos about the country. To do this, the CCP simply floods YouTube with thousands of propaganda videos about China by the CCP. Like this Wolf Warrior cameo. These video clips start abruptly and stop the same way, and are obviously taken from Chinese low budget B-movies and so cost nothing to create. It’s evident the only reason they are on YouTube is to drown out the factual videos about China by the sheer numbers of this kind of crap.

The third tactic is to pay unscrupulous Westerners to make feel-good videos about China. Here are two members of this detestable tribe trying to prove ‘you can criticize the Chinese government.’ It’s so obviously state-sponsored, and probably trying to neutralize the bad press generated by the CCP’s ruthless suppression of Hongkong’s freedom protests. Please contrast what this video says with the facts in the opening video in this post.

Democratic tools are being subverted by the CCP

YouTube has a complaint mechanism because the West is a democracy, and gives people the freedom of speech to state their opinion.

The CCP doesn’t allow free speech as the Hongkong protest proved. Yet, the CCP has no qualms about using YouTube’s freedom of speech to sabotage the right of Western citizens to publish their videos on the free internet.

The YouTuber below does authentic videos about China. He explains how his videos are being sabotaged by thousands of fake flags of ‘violence’ by paid Chinese trolls, despite his videos having not even a semblance of violence in them. According to him, no human at YouTube bothered to confirm if the video actually has violence in it before banning it. The whole thing is as ridiculous as calling a video on cooking ‘violent,’ because there’s a knife in it.

I have attached a link below to the video he mentions so you can judge for yourself if it’s violent or a pretty harmless video giving a brief intro to Taiwan. It’s called Taiwan is a Country (even if you wish really hard it wasn’t).

YouTube China is the need of the hour

If a player breaks the rules in a game, you either kick him out. Or send him to a different playground.

For instance, if a boxer insists on kicking, you either kick him out of the boxing ring, or send him with a letter of recommendation to the MMA. Or both.

China under the CCP isn’t playing by the rules. So YouTube needs to kick them off the platform.

Think about it. Ordinary Chinese citizens aren’t allowed access to YouTube. So it’s obviously the CCP’s stooges who are posting on YouTube and deceitfully flagging videos with factual content as containing porn or violence or whatever, to get YouTube to ban them. So if YouTube bans these videos and trolls, only these jokers will be affected.

To go back to the boxing analogy, YouTube is currently allowing the boxer to kick his opponent below the belt. What YouTube should do is summarily ban all videos uploaded from China, and ignore any flagging comments that originate from China. This will not affect ordinary Chinese citizens as they are unaware of the existence of YouTube. But it will save the rest of us the trouble of having to wade through masses of badly made Chinese B movie clippings to find what we want. And maybe save space on Google’s servers.

Alternatively, Google can create a separate YouTube for China (it doesn’t have to be in China or visible in China), and limit all videos uploaded from China to that site. The only people this will have a negative effect on is the CCP. Once they realize that they are the only ones viewing the videos, they will quickly stop uploading, and save Google the cost of hosting all those pointless Chinese movie clippings. Hey, Google, this suggestion is worth money but I give it to you free as a small ‘thank you’ for the years of free Gmail.

Finally, if the CCP complains, YouTube can always offer them a quid pro quo.

You let us play on your net, and we will let you play on ours.

Why YouTube does not ban China

It’s all about money. It always is.

Google, who owns YouTube, is a business, and China is the world’s biggest market. Google was kicked out of China many years ago, but keeps hoping to ingratiate its way back into the CCP’s good books by turning a blind eye to what’s going on.

Google even went so far as to create a search engine for China that allowed the government to censor websites and snoop on users. The project was abandoned only when Google employees found about it and went ballistic. It makes me sad to say that Sundar Pichai, Google’s Indian origin CEO wouldn’t commit to Google not developing a self-censoring search engine for the CCP.

This incident makes it clear that Google will ignore China’s exploitation of YouTube’s algorithms to drown out videos unfavorable to China. I find it surprising that Google hasn’t figured out that no matter how much Google bends over backward, the CCP will never allow Google into China.

India needs to ban YouTube

If India can ban Chinese apps, why not ban YouTube? Ok, not permanently. But at least for a day or two to get YouTube to stop fake flagging of content by the Chinese. We may even be able to force Google to prevent Chinese propaganda videos from being visible in India.

How about a YouTube alternative?

Considering the massive size and number of videos on YouTube, developing an alternative to it seems impossible. But being limited to a platform that’s being manipulated by China is dangerous. The Indian government needs to encourage India’s tech giants to develop their own video platform in India to counterbalance China’s influence on YouTube.

To sum up, the Chinese are taking YouTube for a ride, and we Indians need to do something about it or else just hop off the bandwagon.

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