YouTube bans Trump for another week over inauguration violence

SAN FRANCISCO – YouTube said on Tuesday (Jan 19) it was extending a one-week ban on outgoing US President Donald Trump uploading videos or live-streaming to his channel for at least an additional seven days.

Alphabet Inc’s video streaming plaform banned Mr Trump on Jan 12 for a minimum of one week for its policy against inciting violence after his supporters stormed the US Capitol as Congress began to certify Mr Biden’s victory on Jan 6.

On Tuesday, YouTube said it was extending the suspension “in light of concerns about the ongoing potential for violence.”

Mr Trump is scheduled to vacate the White House on Wednesday as President-elect Joe Biden takes office.

In a video uploaded earlier on Tuesday to the White House’s YouTube channel, Mr Trump decried the “shutting down” of debate.

“In America we don’t insist on absolute conformity or enforce rigid orthodoxies and punitive speech codes, we just don’t do that,” he said.

As Mr Trump used social media to falsely challenge the results of the Nov 3 election, his supporters followed with violent rhetoric on the services and planned openly for the Jan 6 gatherings, according to researchers and public postings, prompting criticism of the for failing to take action in advance.

Activists have threatened to organise a boycott of YouTube advertising if it does not ban Mr Trump permanently, as Twitter Inc has done. Facebook has blocked his accounts indefinitely.

Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai told Reuters last week that YouTube is treating Mr Trump the same as any other user and will not terminate his account unless he violates the service’s policies three times in 90 days.

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