YouTube’s Terrorism Flag

Google is capitulating to the government’s ongoing campaign of fear and first amendment curtailing, this time by allowing users to flag YouTube videos that anyone feels “promotes terrorism.” There will of course be hypocritical exceptions to the rule, videos that can’t be flagged at all (such as anything released by the government and certain corporate partners, which you probably aren’t).

Relevant excerpts from the LA Times:

After years of calling on YouTube to take down content produced by Islamic extremists, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) called the new flagging protocols a “good first step toward scrubbing mainstream Internet sites of terrorist propaganda.”

“But it shouldn’t take a letter from Congress — or in the worst possible case, a successful terrorist attack — for YouTube to do the right thing,” said Lieberman, whose staff has met with YouTube officials on the issue.

Yet the new category also is “potentially troubling,” said George Washington University law professor Jeffrey Rosen, because the phrase “promotes terrorism” is more subject to interpretation than the longstanding language in the YouTube guidelines that specifically forbids material that incites others to commit violence.

Well, once again Joe “kill switch” Lieberman is leading the charge on internet censorship, under yet a new offensive. My money is on LiveLeak rising to the occasion whenever a controversial video is deleted and I would be giddy if some browser plugin dude with some skills and a hankering for lulz would write a Firefox plugin that would just auto-flag everything I ever come across with with Joe Lieberman’s name as “promotes terrorism” and leaving an automated YouTube comment explaining how he really and truly is a terror upon free speech.

UPDATE: This video seems to be a good target to start with.

  1. I’m going to search for “lieberman” and flag them all as promoting terrorism, then everything mentioning usa/patriot or tsa in a good light ;P