YouTube disables comments on videos involving children

The Guardian’s Alex Hern:

The company will disable all comments on videos featuring younger children, and will also disable comments on those videos of older children that have some risk of attracting predatory behaviour, YouTube says.

It has also prioritised the launch of an AI moderator that is “more sweeping in scope, and will detect and remove two times more individual comments” than its predecessor, in an attempt to identify and remove predatory comments before they can cause harm.

A friend of mine once described a creepy man as a “walking YouTube comment”. We all knew what she meant. The comments on the world’s biggest video site have always been a cesspit. Expect YouTube to do more of this in the not-too-distant future.

Eventually it might just get to the point where comments aren’t worth it to YouTube, unless on major channels with pro-active moderation. That principle seems to be on offer with this change, the BBC’s Chris Fox writes:

A small number of YouTube content creators will be allowed to enable comments on videos featuring children.

These channels will be trusted partners such as family video-bloggers or known YouTube stars.

However, they will be required to actively moderate their comments and demonstrate that their videos carry a low risk of attracting predatory comments.