Hi "Lonelyterroris15″ JLieberman Has Subscribed to Your Videos!

Published on May 19, 2008
by John Paczkowski

lieberman.jpgAdd Sen. Joe Lieberman (I., Conn.) to the list of folks who complain YouTube is neither thorough nor expedient in removing objectionable content from its servers, whether it be in violation of copyright or “good taste.”

Last week, the U.S. senator sent a letter to Google CEO Eric Schmidt decrying YouTube as a clearinghouse for terrorist propaganda videos and calling upon Google to remove them. “… Islamist terrorist organizations use YouTube to disseminate their propaganda, enlist followers and provide weapons training–activities that are all essential to terrorist activity,” Lieberman, Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, wrote. “According to testimony received by our committee, the online content produced by al-Qaeda and other Islamist terrorist organizations can play a significant role in the process of radicalization, the end point of which is the planning and execution of a terrorist attack. YouTube also, unwittingly, permits Islamist terrorist groups to maintain an active, pervasive and amplified voice, despite military setbacks or successful operations by the law enforcement and intelligence communities.”

Lieberman would like Google (GOOG) to smoke these YouTube terrorists out of their holes. To that end, he provided Schmidt with a list of offensive videos. Some featured gratuitous violence or hate speech and were removed. But many more featured legal non-violent, non-hate speech. These YouTube refused to remove because they don’t violate its Community Guidelines.

“While we respect and understand [Lieberman’s] views, YouTube encourages free speech and defends everyone’s right to express unpopular points of view,” YouTube said in a post to its company blog. “We believe that YouTube is a richer and more relevant platform for users precisely because it hosts a diverse range of views, and rather than stifle debate we allow our users to view all acceptable content and make up their own minds. Of course, users are always free to express their disagreement with a particular video on the site, by leaving comments or their own response video. That debate is healthy.”

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