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The tricky task of policing YouTube
How to clean up the world’s biggest video-sharing site
Susan Wojcicki, the CEO of YouTube, received the first message about the massacre in New Zealand at around 8pm. Assaults on two mosques in Christchurch had begun minutes earlier. The shooter had live-streamed the killings on Facebook and the footage from the social-media site was being shared on YouTube as the killer had clearly hoped. Ms Wojcicki checked in with her team. Executives and software engineers were looking for different versions of the video so that machine-learning programs could be trained to hunt for them. Thousands of human reviewers were scouring through videos that had been automatically tagged, sorting news reports and the like from the offending footage. The world’s largest video platform—owned by Google, the world’s most powerful search engine—was mobilised to cleanse itself of the horrific clip.
It failed. Before she went to bed at 1am Ms Wojcicki was still
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