YouTube to demonetize all Russian users, ban ‘state media’

Google-owned video platform expanding its bans from Europe to worldwide

YouTube, owned by Google’s parent company Alphabet, announced on Friday it would block access to “Russian state media” channels across the globe and block all monetization on its platform inside Russia, citing the conflict in Ukraine.

The video-sharing platform wants to remove content “denying, minimizing or trivializing well-documented violent events,” as it goes against its Community Guidelines, YouTube said in a statement on Friday, specifically referring to content “about Russia’s invasion in Ukraine that violates this policy.”

Having blocked RT and Sputnik in the European Union – at the request of EU governments – on March 1, YouTube announced on Friday it was expanding this censorship to the entire planet, and including all channels “associated with Russian state-funded media.” 

The change is “effective immediately,” YouTube said, adding that its systems may take a little while to process it.

YouTube ads have already been “paused” in Russia, but the platform is now extending this to “all of the ways to monetize on our platform” in the country, presumably affecting super-chats and sponsorships as well.

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