A New Tube for Everyone ~ Breaking the Google Choke Hold on Free Speech

Opinion

Google Bans Guns
Google Expands Anti-Gun Policy

USA – -(AmmoLand.com)- Anyone who watches videos on YouTube is well aware that the video hosting service, owned by Google, has been slowly choking off channels and content providers who don't comport with the Google leadership's leftist worldview.

It started a few years ago when “traditional media” – particularly newspapers – began going after some of YouTube's biggest stars by publicizing their incomes, and highlighting examples of them presenting off-color and potentially racist content, with major advertisers like Coca-Cola appearing as the content’s sponsor.

What this actually boiled down to was “traditional media” trying to recapture some of those advertising dollars by scaring the advertisers away from the new frontier of unregulated content.

It worked, to a degree. Major sponsors, who were actually sponsoring the platform, not specific content, backed away, costing Google hundreds of millions of dollars, just as the platform was moving into a position of profitability. Instead of standing by their policy of offering an open hosting service with few restrictions on content, and offering their advertisers ways to more selectively tailor their ad placement, Google blocked and “demonetized” wide swaths of channels that they deemed “inappropriate” for commercial sponsorship – including most channels with any sort of firearm-related content.

After months of wrangling and policy shifts, the YouTube universe began to settle in and normalize somewhat. Many channels that had been riding on the ragged edge of YouTube's loose guidelines, like channels offering “health videos” of young women demonstrating yoga “au natural” and those presenting overtly racist content like neo-nazi channels, were either barred altogether, or were placed under tight restrictions that made them difficult to find or view, and kept them far away from any advertisers’ dollars or commercials. But other channels with content that most people would consider non-controversial, were also “demonetized,” moved out of the main viewing areas, and left with far fewer viewers and far fewer advertiser dollars if any.

These included gun channels, along with all sorts of channels that present “conservative” views.

Even channels that are funded by direct sponsorship have been hurt due to shifts in the way YouTube presents options to viewers. Originally, the platform would track a viewer's channel preferences and at the end of each video, the system would offer up a dozen other videos that matched that viewer's apparent interests. If you watched a lot of shooting or hunting videos, the system would suggest more shooting and hunting videos for you to look at, along with a few “trending” videos that the system determined were popular with other people with similar viewing preferences. If you watched conservative news channels like Bill Whittle and Ben Shapiro, the system would suggest other conservative news videos that might interest you, and if you subscribed to particular channels, those channels’ new offerings would always be at the top of your menu list. But as YouTube shifted their suggestion system, gun channels and conservative news channels became less and less likely to show up in a viewer's suggestion list, resulting in fewer and fewer new viewers. And of course, fewer views means less money from advertisers, even if they are direct sponsors.

In recent months the restrictions and limitations have been escalating again. New restrictions on types of firearm-related content allowed on the platform have been implemented, barring any links to firearm or ammunition sales, forbidding any demonstrations of firearm manufacture, assembly, or modification, and labeling most firearm-related content as inappropriate for viewers under 18 years of age. They are also “cracking down” on “hate speech,” which can include anything from racist rants and Holocaust denial to scientific discussion of sex and gender, or Biblical discussion of homosexuality as a sin.

Some, such as videos from PragerU.com, have been restricted on what appears to be purely political grounds.

There also appears to be a new shift in the way the system makes viewing suggestions, feeding “conservative” viewers more “conservative” content, but only after they have demonstrated a strong leaning in that direction. This feeds an echo-chamber effect, providing “conservatives” with only “conservative” content, and presumably providing “liberals” with only “liberal” content, while continuing to suppress “conservative” content from the masses.

Various efforts have been put forward to provide a platform for “conservative” and firearm-related content, but most of these efforts are misguided because they are designed to only reach audiences that specifically seek out that type of content. The magic and power of YouTube was that one interest could lead a person into new areas that they had never considered before. Watching a video on blacksmithing could trigger a suggestion of a video on engraving, which could lead to viewing a video on classic firearms, leading to a video of Jerry Miculek firing 12 shots from a 6-shot revolver in under 3 seconds (reload included), which might lead to a series of videos on IDPA and USPSA competition and a new firearm enthusiast is born.

Those viewers might never bother to seek out a shooting channel, but when the shooting video is presented next to some other interest, they have the opportunity to explore that new idea. That's why the rapid deterioration of YouTube is such a problem, and why single-focus alternatives are not a solution.

Instead of various marginalized groups trying to create narrowly focused platforms for their content, these groups should be teaming with other liberty-minded groups and individuals to create a truly open, lightly regulated, free speech platform where content creators can be judged by the public, not by the political whims of a few San Francisco billionaires.

Firearms groups and creators, conservative and libertarian groups and creators, gamers, wrench-benders, homesteaders, fabricators, free speech advocates, religious advocates, and others concerned with liberty, need to join together to build an open-source, video hosting platform that's dedicated to freedom of speech. It would be a massive undertaking, but something needs to break the grip of Google and YouTube.


Jeff Knox
Jeff Knox

About Jeff Knox:

Jeff Knox is a second-generation political activist and director of The Firearms Coalition. His father Neal Knox led many of the early gun rights battles for your right to keep and bear arms. Read Neal Knox – The Gun Rights War.

The Firearms Coalition is a loose-knit coalition of individual Second Amendment activists, clubs and civil rights organizations. Founded by Neal Knox in 1984, the organization provides support to grassroots activists in the form of education, analysis of current issues, and with a historical perspective of the gun rights movement. The Firearms Coalition has offices in Buckeye, Arizona and Manassas, VA. Visit: www.FirearmsCoalition.org.

  • 21 thoughts on “A New Tube for Everyone ~ Breaking the Google Choke Hold on Free Speech

    1. We run a hunting YouTube channel from the UK, Fieldsports Channel, and we have noticed a slight decrease in monetised videos. However, payments from YouTube for preroll advertising are only a tiny fraction of our income so it makes no difference to us. YouTube supports what we do. We have attended seminars at YouTube’s London headquarters on how to market ourselves to sponsors. On the day many airgun channels received multiple ‘strikes’, our YouTube partner manager advised us to put up more airgun videos. We also track and publish a ranking of 450 commercial hunting and gun YouTube channels. Every couple of months, one or two of them receive a strike, but many more leave the platform, probably because they do not receive enough sponsorship from the gun trade to continue putting out films. I agree with the thrust of Jeff’s article but the experiences I list here are at odds with the specifics of what he says.

    2. It is about time some form of movement to oppose the monopolistic regime of present media status. Another point I feel is very important for you all to know about Google. Currently Google is working hand-in-glove with the shadow government(totally Illegal) to implement the introduction of 5G transmitters in YOUR streets and neighbourhoods. With, might I add ,Google is the main and only company subcontracted to construct and erect them! Furthermore,those towers are NOT transmitting Wi-fi ,they are transmitting DEW ( Directed Energy Waves), fully military weapons! I have seen the transmission readings, which again may I add are NOT WIFI at all! For trying with a scanner to find the wifi frequency it was transmitting and it was zero wifi waves coming from them. Wrap your minds around this fact, all transmissions of any transmitted waves ,where the public are subjected to their presence, cannot exceed 10 mgws,… The ones in your neighbourhood are transmitting between 875Klw-1153Klw per cubic meter. Tell me that is not a threat to your wellbeing and any other living creature in those locations. This is known in military terms as the ‘Silent Warfare’. You are already under attack ,and their time table for your destruction, started THIS YEAR! So let’s get together people,we are all in this TOGETHER!

    3. i left facebook years ago and have not looked back. i would love to get rid of google and youtube next and use someone who respects 1st and 2nd amendment rights. several orginizations could join together and start an alternative to google and youtube and maybe even branch into credit cards,website storefronts, and maybe eventually banking. they would get all of the pro 1st and 2nd amendment communitys business and probably alot of other people once it gets running.

    4. I forwarded this video and article and my own commentary about it to all of my friends and contacts.
      Do the same.
      And re-read Orwell’s 1984.

      1. @RM, and, also, I can not recommend highly enough “Unintended Consequences” by John Ross. It is worth its price just for the truthful recitation of history.

    5. Real.video, a Health Ranger venture looks good. Stop using Facebook, Twitter, even YouTube. Eventually all that you seek will be on Real.Video and YouTube will DIE. Maybe take down Google as well.

    6. I believe everything in this article is true. Unfortunately Google is a private company, as such they should have the Right to run their business as they see fit. The real problem is people who continue to use businesses like YouTube and the NFL. We Americans are more concerned about being entertained than we are about the moral decline of our country. If Americans actually acted on their values instead just complaining, maybe things would change. If every individual would boycott things that violate their values system business and politicians would take note. Of course that is assuming there is still such a thing as good values system left in America.

      1. I absolutely agree. As a proud veteran and citizen I have boycotted the NFL, Netflix, Twitter and now youtube, with more to come, including Facebook. The only way to counter this insidious behavior from leftists is to NOT use their products or the products they endorse, and let them know you are boycotting them. There is economic opportunity for someone to create viable conservative alternatives, if all conservatives moved off their platforms they would face at minimum a 50% loss in revenue.

      2. This is not entirely true. If you deny a person or group on the basis of race color or creed it is called “discrimination”. The same would be true if you disadvantage an entire group based on politics form a service you are running.

    7. These companies try to say that they can control what we see because they provide a FREE service. This service is not free. They take our information and sell it to provide the service. By allowing them access to our information we are paying for the service.
      Think about who built and should own the internet. I am now a firm believer that the federal government should step in and break up these huge monopolies.

    8. It takes money and it takes massive outrage. We see outrage here but we are a small community compared to the rest of the world. What is possible and has started is interest, by Congress, in companies like Twitter, Google and Facebook, who have a monopoly and who also are censoring free speech. I know there are some who will loudly proclaim that these are “businesses and can do whatever they like”. No, they can’t. As monopolies they fall under the Sherman Anti-trust Act and when they start censoring free speech, if found guilty, there are fines and prison sentences involved. Though I generally loath government intervention there comes a time when it’s required. Google is the largest company on the planet. It CAN, quite literally, change what and how we view news and shape the outcome of elections.

      It’s way past the general hearing time for these executives. Congress is the one body that can ensure that these monopolies stop censoring free speech or they can ensure that they are broken up and the parties involved go to prison.

      1. Yes, you are right. But the Marxist Democrats do not care about the rule of law unless they can twist it to impose tyranny on the rest of us.

    9. The market for an alternative must be large, I’m surprised someone hasn’t established one yet. Or are the big tech companies using their muscle to restrict internet access for the alternatives?

    10. Yes , we need to break the back of THESE monster organizations who dominate our social media !! As it is today there really is NO SOCIAL MEDIA !! It is restricted MEDIA !! Not the kind of thing I want to see for an American society !!
      I hope and do pray we can one day return to the American I remember as a younger woman , If someone would have told me just 10 years ago , that our country would even entertain a ” socialist Democrat ” , I would have just laughed !! but here we are !?? Globalism ?? What !?? Not in my universe !!

    11. We need a NewTube, and one run by folks with some 1A spine.

      Another front on the battlefield is Credit Card companies. Like First Data, who tried to put RMR Bullets out of business.
      Using cash for purchases will deny them the processing fee for the sale. My local store says First Data on the card swipe terminal. My Milk, Beer, and Gas are now paid for in cash.

          1. The weather can be controlled. A UN treaty was created to prevent them from using the methods in warfare or other nefarious means. The US admitted their use of aerosol particulate spraying just a couple of years ago. China uses it frequently. They were even noted to have used when constructing their Olympic center while preparing to host the Olympics. The best proof! There were no criss-crossing clouds when I was young. They are a regular sight over most US cities since the late 90’s. Plane trails always dissipated in yesteryear. Today most don’t some others do.

          2. My gawd, Ansel ! CHEMTRAILS have been a sight to see in the sky for decades now, and after all the years of denial, there are now pics of the spray equipment inside the planes now. There are multiple reasons why they spray their barium, aluminum, mycoplasma, medical waste, etc. one reason is “the solution to pollution is dilution”, another is “over the horizon radio transmission”, and another is to steer hurricanes, and another is …….!!! The list goes on and on. Don’t you ever look up ????

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