Vietnam asks Google to remove 2,200 toxic YouTube videos


Updated : 03/25/2017 17:06 GMT + 7

Vietnam’s broadcast watchdog has demanded that Google pull more than 2,200 videos with ‘toxic’ content from YouTube, a deputy chief official of the authority confirmed on Friday.

The Department of Broadcasting and Electronic Information under Vietnam’s information ministry said earlier this month that there are as many as 8,000 videos whose content is either fake or anti-government on Google-owned YouTube.

A list of more than a quarter of those videos has been sent to Google, so that the company can review and remove them from the world’s largest video-sharing platform, the department deputy head Le Quang Tu Do said on Friday.

The ‘toxic’ videos are classified as those spreading fabricated information against the government or inciting violence and terrorism.

Do said Google has responded cooperatively to the request, saying they will prioritize reviews of those videos and maintain close cooperation with Vietnam.

The broadcasting department has previously warned big-name brands in Vietnam that their online ads were appearing before and during nearly those inappropriate YouTube videos, calling them to review their advertising policy with the Google site.

Commenting on this issue, Do said the latest review by his department found that those ads are no longer placed alongside the ‘toxic’ videos.

However, Do noted that this is only a temporary solution, adding that brands and advertisers must join hands with the information ministry to “create a fair and lawful environment for online advertising.”

Code of conduct for social network users

According to the broadcast watchdog, the department is working with Google to create a protocol to have toxic content removed from YouTube or other Google-owned platforms in a faster way, instead of the current review mechanism.

Nguyen Thanh Lam, head of the broadcasting department, has previously revealed Google is only able to remove content on a video-by-video basis, which means it is impossible to remove all 8,000 videos on the platform.

The broadcasting department has also proposed preparing a code of conduct for Vietnamese users on social networks.

“We have also called on such big players in the field as Google and Facebook to cooperate with Vietnam in composing the set of rules,” Do said.

The official revealed that an international conference is scheduled for next month to discuss the detailed plan for the code of conduct.

“We will learn from the experience of other countries, then start negotiating with relevant social network operators on the issue,” he said.

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