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YouTube removes my new interview exposing the TGA's regulatory failures
The social media platform continues to maintain a fact-free zone on issues that matter
Yesterday, YouTube removed my new interview with Topher Field and issued a strike to The Aussie Wire account, citing a breach of its medical misinformation policy.
In the interview, I discuss my article, Australia's drug regulator admits it doesn't know extent of Covid vaccine harm, and mention the fact that the TGA never withdrew provisional approval for AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine, despite its official acknowledgment of 13 Australian deaths related to the product.
Obviously, all of this is factual. Most of the information discussed in the interview came directly from the TGA, or from a Senate hearing which is on the public record.
However, as previously discussed on this Substack, YouTube’s medical misinformation policy is not about ensuring the information on its platform is factual. It’s about maintaining the official line. As below,
“YouTube doesn't allow content that poses a serious risk of egregious harm by spreading medical misinformation about currently administered vaccines that are approved and confirmed to be safe and effective by local health authorities and by the the World Health Organization (WHO).”
Even if the product has killed 13 Australians.
I noted in my article, Your Government is Always Right. Everything Else is Misinformation.,
“As journalist Michael Shellenberger has pointed out, if YouTube had existed over the past 200 years, then under such a policy they would have banned criticisms of bloodletting, thalidomide, lobotomies, and sterilising the mentally ill, all of which were recommended by official health authorities at one point in time.”
YouTube’s policy pushes factual information on issues that matter out to the fringes of social media, to the few remaining platforms that allow content from dissenting voices.
This breaches the principles of democratic discourse in two ways. First, it interferes with people’s right to hear a range of views. Second, it prevents dissenters from exercising their right to be heard (an important aspect of the broader and more frequently referenced right to speak).
We probably need to stop thinking of these platforms as ‘the public square’, and more as a collection of curated conferences where only select themes and voices are allowed air time.
Unfortunately, this is currently the status quo, and our government is hoping to exacerbate the problem further with its proposed misinformation bill.
For now, the workarounds are to share dissenting content ourselves with those willing to hear it, to open discussions (both online and off), and to build up audiences on alternative platforms in an effort to maintain viewpoint diversity in online spaces (that’s your cue to subscribe below!).
Watch and share my interview with Topher Field on The Aussie Wire
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