Sensorship Threatens Agriculture Advocates


What makes a video inappropriate?  It’s like the old quote from a former senator about pornography, “I know it when I see it.”  Apparently that’s what employees at YouTube thought about video of hogs living on Chris Chinn’s Missouri farm, when they flagged the video as inappropriate for anyone under 18 and could only be viewed by adults who are YouTube members.

“At first I thought it was a mistake and after two or three months of attempting to get my video unflagged I realized that it wasn’t a mistake, that my First Amendment rights were being censored and I was not being allowed to tell my story,” Chinn said.  “I was upset.  I was very frustrated because we went from having over 1,000 views a month on our video to barely getting 100 views a month.”

YouTube didn’t notify Chinn that they were flagging her video or give an explanation.  The only reason she discovered it had happened was because one day her daughter wanted to watch it.

“I went to their safety page and it explained there that the reason that they would flag a video as inappropriate was because of: privacy, teen safety, sexual content, sexual abuse, animal abuse or abuse in general. It really confused me because my video had none of those things in it,” Chinn said.

The restrictions have been lifted, but no one from YouTube would comment on the reasons behind any of their actions.

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