YouTube admits that LGBT videos are hidden in its “restricted mode”, apologies for confusion
The Google-owned video company offers a “restricted mode” that aims to “screen out potentially objectionable content”. But a number of prominent YouTubers noticed that LGBTQ videos appeared to be hidden as part of that rule – provoking huge protests. Now YouTube has admitted that such videos are being hidden, but says that it only does so to ensure that people don’t see videos that deal with “more sensitive issues”. “We are so proud to represent LGBTQ+ voices on our platform – they’re a key part of what YouTube is all about,” a Twitter post on the YouTube Creators account read. “The intention of Restricted Mode is to filter out mature content for the tiny subset of users who want a more limited experience. “LGBTQ+ videos are available in Restricted Mode, but videos that discuss more sensitive issues may not be. We regret any confusion this has caused and are looking into your concerns.” A YouTube spokesperson later clarified that those more sensitive issues are particularly videos that cover subjects like “health, politics and sexuality”. Many of the videos being hidden don’t appear to deal with anything explicit or adult. Videos including those looking at LGBT models or make-up tutorials posted by trans users were hidden, according to their creators. YouTuber Rowan Ellis was among the first to point out that videos covering things like relationships or crushes were being filtered out of restricted mode, apparently without their creators’ knowledge, in a video titled ‘YouTube Is Anti-LGBT?’. YouTube advertises restricted mode as a way for children and families to avoid seeing “potentially objectionable content”. It flags such videos using “community flagging, age-restrictions, and other signals to identify and filter out potentially inappropriate content”, it writes on the page advertising it.