YouTube.com has offered many fun and interesting videos in the past 11 years. The website builds a platform of creativity, randomness, and a chance to speak out about important issues. However, YouTube has gone through some rough patches, such as the way it favors views, clickbait, questionable trends, and challenges over content. In the beginning of 2018, the website had been lacking in paying attention to some of the content that people were posting on their website.
At the start of the new year, infamous vlogger Logan Paul had posted a vlog of him and his friends going to “The Suicide Forest,” or Aokigahara, a place in Japan where people go to commit suicide. Upon arriving at the forest, Paul and his friends were planning to camp out in the forest for the night. As the video continues, they find a dead body in the middle of the woods and attempt to get a close up view of it. Although the video got millions of views, people were disgusted and shocked that the vlogger tried to capture video footage of the body. He then proceeded to mock the suicide, an issue that is very serious. Youtube took the video down a few days later, and Paul sent out an apology video. As a result of the video, he was then kicked off of the platform. Unfortunately, the vlogger got a second chance and was readmitted onto the platform after donating money to a charity for suicide prevention.
Despite this, it bothered the YouTube community because of how long it took for website to take down the video. In addition, YouTube has not been the best at being alert with what people upload in their videos lately.
Another incident that flourished in the YouTube community in the same month was “The Tide Pod Challenge.” “The Tide Pod Challenge” is a challenge where people attempt to eat an entire Tide Pod, even though the product is inedible. Younger people have attempted to do this challenge, and some attempts have resulted in death. After the release of the videos, YouTube.com has started taking action and in doing so, has taken down all videos regarding the “Tide Pod Challenge.”
As a person who loves to go on YouTube, it seems that vloggers do not have the common sense of what the consequences the content of these videos will have. There needs to be consistent repercussions for vloggers who fail to comply with the guidelines of the website. According to the website howstuffworks.com, in an article titled “The Rules of YouTube,” there is a list of guidelines for what not to post on the site and what employees do in the case of an inappropriate video. “Staffers review every flagged video, and if they agree that the video violates YouTube.com policies, they’ll remove the clip from the site and send a warning to the video’s creator. If the violation is really extreme, YouTube.com might also delete the creator’s account,” said howstuffworks.com. If that is the case, YouTube has to seriously focus on repercussions, considering the guidelines that some of these videos are breaking.
As we continue to try to make our world a positive and safe space, let’s try and make YouTube.com a place with a focus on creativity and being an outlet — as something we can enjoy, rather than fear.