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YouTube becomes latest social platform to block Donald Trump

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YouTube has become the latest social network to suspend US President Donald Trump’s account over concerns about “the ongoing potential for violence”.

The video sharing site said the account would be inaccessible for “a minimum of seven days”, meaning Trump will not have access until after President-elect Joe Biden takes office.

Social networks have been clamping down on Trump’s personal accounts since the attack on the US Capitol building last week which temporarily halted Biden’s confirmation and led to five deaths. Facebook and Instagram were the first major platforms to ban Trump, followed by Twitter over the weekend.

Trump’s YouTube channel is now prevented from uploading new videos or livestreams for a minimum of seven days, which may be extended, the Google-owned firm said in a statement.

The action followed threats from US civil rights groups that they would lead an advertiser boycott of the platform if it did not immediately suspend Trump’s account.

Jim Steyer was one of the organisers of the “Stop Hate for Profit” campaign which led over 1,000 advertisers to boycott Facebook in July. Speaking to Reuters, he said the groups demanded that YouTube takes down Trump’s verified YouTube channel, which has 2.76 million subscribers.

YouTube initially removed new content uploaded to the channel as it violated policies for inciting violence before ultimately suspending it entirely.

“After review, and in light of concerns about the ongoing potential for violence, we removed new content uploaded to Donald J Trump’s channel for violating our policies,” YouTube said in a statement on Twitter. “It now has its first strike & is temporarily prevented from uploading new content for a minimum of 7 days.”

“Given the ongoing concerns about violence, we will also be indefinitely disabling comments on President Trump’s channel, as we’ve done to other channels where there are safety concerns found in the comments section.”

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