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YouTube may review its most popular channels for offensive content

A series of scandals have led many to call for YouTube to vet its videos.
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PG/Bauer-Griffin via Getty Images

It became pretty clear last year that YouTube has a content problem. Last spring, companies like AT&T and Verizon pulled ads because they were found to be appearing alongside extremist videos. And it was hit with another round of ad-pulling later in the year when reports surfaced that a portion of the site's children's content turned out to be not so kid-friendly. Now, following the uproar over Logan Paul's Aokigahara forest video, YouTube may begin vetting the videos posted by its most popular channels, according to Bloomberg.

Paul's channel was one of YouTube's Google Preferred accounts -- a group of top-tier, highly viewed channels that Google sells ad space on at a higher rate. YouTube pulled Paul's Preferred status yesterday as part of its response to his video, but for content creators that still have that status, those Preferred accounts will now reportedly be vetted in order to make sure their content is appropriate for the brands buying ad space on the videos.

According to Bloomberg's source, Google will use both human moderators and AI to spot videos that may not be appropriate for ads. In a statement to Bloomberg, a Google spokesperson said, "We built Google Preferred to help our customers easily reach YouTube's most passionate audiences and we've seen strong traction in the last year with a record number of brands. As we said recently, we are discussing and seeking feedback from our brand partners on ways to offer them even more assurances for what they buy in the Upfronts."

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