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YouTube Is Launching a News Hub to Combat Misinformation

YouTube Is Launching a News Hub to Combat Misinformation

In an era where Facebook, Threads and X are stifling posts from news outlets on their platforms, YouTube announced a new multi-platform news-watching experience to help viewers across 40 countries find the latest stories from reputable sources.

The company has said it aims to make reliable news more readily accessible by launching a “watch page” and a “Shorts Innovation Program.” The watch page curates content from what YouTube has identified as “authoritative sources” like The Associated Press, Sky News and CBS Evening News.

This feature will provide viewers with credible news and recommend related videos to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the topic at hand. The Shorts Innovation Program will offer condensed news segments, enabling users to quickly catch up on the news of the day. Both efforts appear to be an answer to the growing concern over misinformation and the need for reliable news sources in a digital age where false information can spread rapidly.

“Now more than ever, we remain committed to connecting people to high-quality information they can trust, particularly in times of elections, unrest and natural disasters,” YouTube said in a news release.

YouTube said it is working with more than 20 organizations from 10 different countries to bring reliable news to viewers, but only those with an existing long-form video presence on YouTube were included. The company will also be investing $1.6 million into the Shorts Innovation Program for News.

Meanwhile, Elon Musk’s X (formerly Twitter) has faced criticism for allowing misinformation to thrive, despite Musk’s attempts to reign it in. YouTube’s decision to promote credible news sources seems like a response to the growing scrutiny placed on tech companies regarding their role in curbing misinformation.

Yet, the move also raises questions about YouTube’s overall recommendation system. The platform frequently employs algorithms to recommend content to users. With the introduction of the “watch page” and Shorts, YouTube is essentially suggesting that users should go to their dedicated news feature for credible information while remaining skeptical of news recommendations elsewhere on the platform. Which begs the question: can an algorithm sniff out credible news sources from the fake ones? Guess we’ll find out.

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