YouTube censored New Culture Forum founder and Director Peter Whittle’s interview with journalist Peter Hitchens for “violating YouTube’s Terms of Service.”
During the interview, which is titled “Peter Hitchens: From Covid to Culture Wars-The Left’s Long March Through UK Institutions is Complete,” Hitchens said that he has not been invited to appear on mainstream media shows because he opposes lockdowns, criticized the media for not presenting both sides of the argument regarding lockdowns, accused the UK government of fear-mongering and being incompetent, and discussed what he views as a decline of conservatism in the UK.
The interview was an instant hit and had over 150,000 views within the first few days of going live. But then it was removed by YouTube for alleged community standards violations.
When the video was taken down, New Culture Forum noted that “nothing Mr. Hitchens said differed from his countless other YT video interviews” and pointed to Hitchens’ interviews with talkRADIO and Good Morning Britain as examples.
After facing pushback, YouTube apologized and restored the video. However, the takedown appears to have crushed much of the momentum the video was enjoying pre-takedown and the view count on the video has been frozen for the past couple of days.
Since YouTube’s March announcement that during the coronavirus pandemic there will be an increase in video removals and that this would include “some videos that may not violate policies,” many creators have had similar experiences with their videos being temporarily censored and then restored.
Even if creators do manage to get their videos restored, the temporary removal usually kills their virality which then limits their reach and viewership going forward.
This isn’t the first time Hitchens has faced YouTube censorship. In June, his interview on the TRIGGERnometry YouTube channel was scrubbed from search results and removed from subscription feeds meaning that the only way for YouTube users to watch the video was to have the direct link.