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YouTube Suspends OANN for Spreading False COVID-19 Info

YouTube Tuesday afternoon suspended One America News Network (OANN) from posting new videos or livestreams for one week after the channel, rapidly becoming a Donald Trump favorite, uploaded a video promoting a phony cure for the coronavirus.

As first reported by Axios, the Google-owned video hosting service removed the offending video and also kicked OANN out of its YouTube Partner Program, meaning it can no longer make money on, or “monetize,” videos on its channel.

YouTube had been criticized in the past for not cracking down on OANN and allowing it to use the platform to spread misinformation about coronavirus and the election.

A YouTube spokesperson told CNBC, “After careful review, we removed a video from OANN and issued a strike on the channel for violating our COVID-19 misinformation policy, which prohibits content claiming there’s a guaranteed cure. Additionally, due to repeated violations of our COVID-19 misinformation policy and other channel monetization policies, we’ve suspended the channel from the YouTube Partner Program and as a result, its monetization on YouTube.”

If OANN wants to again begin to profit from its videos it will have to reapply to the program. OANN’s YouTube channel claims to have 1.2 million subscribers and bills itself as “a new credible source for national and international headlines. An independent, cutting edge platform for political discussions.”

The channel made no mention of its YouTube suspension on its Twitter feed Tuesday afternoon, but was promoting a program it plans to air this Saturday night titled “The Fall of Joe Biden.” You may recognize Chanel Rion as the OANN representative that White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany has repeatedly let in through the back door during press briefings so that she could pose conspiracy-laden questions.

Trump has been encouraging his supporters to turn to abandon Fox News in favor of outlets like OANN and Newsmax. Trump soured on Fox after what he felt was particularly harsh treatment by Chris Wallace as moderator of the first presidential debate with Joe Biden. That criticism has picked up since the election as a result of Fox declaring Biden the winner of the vote in Arizona.

In recent days Trump has retweeted a number of OANN tweets that cast doubt on the election results, all of which have been flagged by Twitter.



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