Take YouTube’s Dangers Seriously – The New York Times


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My colleague Kevin Roose excels at explaining how our conduct is formed by the businesses behind our favourite on-line hangouts.

In the primary episode of Kevin’s new audio sequence, known as “Rabbit Hole,” he tells us how Caleb Cain, a school dropout in West Virginia, discovered himself watching ever extra excessive YouTube movies. Caleb stated he began to imagine the racism, misogyny and conspiracy theories he absorbed.

People imagine in fringe concepts for advanced causes. But Kevin factors some blame at YouTube and its characteristic that recommends one video after one other. This can push folks from comparatively mainstream movies towards harmful concepts.

Our dialog about this, and extra:

Aren’t most of us on YouTube for cooking movies and kittens, not conspiracies?

Kevin: People watch greater than a billion hours of YouTube movies every day. While we will’t understand how a lot of that’s disturbing or harmful, it’s inevitably an enormous quantity. And for a very long time, folks like Alex Jones and propaganda networks like RT had hundreds of thousands of subscribers and tons of of hundreds of thousands of views.

For reliable information about the coronavirus, visit the W.H.O. website and continue reading coverage from The New York Times and other trusted news outlets.


  • “A new way of life conducted amid an unseen alien intelligence.” This story in The Atlantic is a terrific explanation of how Facebook’s data-collection and advertising systems work. And as Kevin discussed about YouTube, Facebook’s automated systems are shaping people’s behaviors in ways even the company can’t predict.

  • Dividing people, with ulterior motives: The protests against state shelter-in-place orders are being coordinated by a handful of provocateurs on Facebook, The Washington Post reported. Charlie Warzel, the Times Opinion writer, said the coronavirus is a perfect subject for online opportunists who “instill a deep distrust in all authority, while promoting a seductive, conspiratorial alternate reality.”

  • Signs of trouble long before Zoombombing: Zoom, the suddenly popular video-calling app, says it was caught off guard by trolls breaking into people’s meetings and by newly identified security flaws. But years ago, some businesses that used Zoom flagged these risks and tried to get the company to fix them, my colleagues Natasha Singer and Nicole Perlroth report.

“I hate this house!!” Oh yes, we are all this cranky child.


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