Daily Update 23rd March 2018 - CALL TO ACTION # 1
Jörg has posted a call to action today so as a quick daily update here are his three posts today.
I think that we need to specify the demands regarding changes of the rules by YouTube. I believe that it would be fair if YouTube would organize a hearing with affected Creators and discuss the plans so unnecessary bans are avoided. Also it is a must that new rules are not set into effect immediately, so that everyone gets a chance to clean up in a timely fashion.
This doesn't mean that I am OK with the new rules regarding firearms. In fact I don't like them one bit. In my book, if the video only shows legal content, then it should be allowed on the platform, maybe with an age restriction if that seems appropriate. Illegal content should be removed of course.
But I understand that sometimes the rules must be changed, or at least defined more clearly. I don't think YouTube should decide upon such changes just by themselves. The creators must have a say in the process too. Then at least the glaringly stupid bans could have been avoided, like the no-silencers-rule (that are legal devices in many countries and actually protect the environment) or the no-reloading-videos rule.
Several people are asking what we will do against this. Well, in my book we must first talk to YouTube. In case they are willing to negotiate, fine, we will try that in good faith. But in case they stonewall us, we will call all members to action. That may happen sooner than expected, now that so many gun channels are effectively wiped out.
The REAL problem with YouTube's new firearms rules
Okay, after reading the new firearms rules thoroughly, I think the content limitations aren't the problem. Most videos are still allowed. Just the links to sites that sell the guns and accessories mentioned will have to be removed. YouTube now says people have 30 days to do that. So they mellowed a bit.
You can still show guns with silencers on them and with mags larger than 30 rounds. You can't show how to make and attach these things, but filming the shooting fun with them is still OK. If a user wants instructions about making the things and attaching them, he can just hop onto google and will find web sites, videos on other platforms, complete PDF files with detailed blue prints. If someone wants to buy a gun or even a bump stock shown in the video, google will tell him where. Links in the videos add a bit of comfort, but it really isn't a big deal for the consumer to have these links no more. So this does sound like it is not so bad really. But it is.
Gun videos have long since been demonetized. Many gun channels simply switched to sponsored videos as an income model. They simply found their own advertisers.
But now YouTube takes these options from them as well. This leads to ultimate censorship. Making gun videos is expensive. The guns cost money. The ammo costs money. The production costs money. The creators need to eat, too, same goes for their families. Without funding, gun channels will simply disappear. It is my strong suspicion that THIS is the true goal behind the new rules.
YouTube can't hide behind the "big evil advertisers" that simply don't want their ads to be shown next to such content. They are now cutting off advertisers that WANT to be in the related videos. Mind you we are talking about legitimate, licensed businesses. They pay taxes and employ people. But they can no longer advertise their legal business on a video that features the products they legally sell.
This is content policy. Not business necessity.
YouTube clearly has stepped over the "we are just taking care of our business interest" line. They are now clearly abusing the power they have, being a monopolist.
This can't go on. We can't have a private company, no matter how big, deciding about politics. It is NOT THEIR BUSINESS and they need to be put in their place. It is time for the governments to step in. But we as a union will do our part, as good as we can.
United we stand.
CALL TO ACTION #1
OK, my dear fellow union members, I told you that I may ask you for your help eventually.
The time has come.
The new firearms rules are aimed at silencing gun channels. We can't take that. And we won't.
If we want our favorite gun channels to survive, we will have to contribute. Most if not all gun channels have a Patreon page now. Just go to their channel page and click on "about". The link will usually be right there.
I am asking you to support your three favorite weapon related channels with a dollar a month (or more!).
So please pick your channels, become a Patron for them, and then let us know in a comment to THIS post what your choices were. Of course, in case you already are a Patron, just list your choices too. This isn't just for new Patrons.
I will PERSONALLY give a dollar a month to EVERY weapons channel you guys list in the comments. If YOU support them, I will do so too. I am not rich but I will do what I can.
Yes, I know some of you guys may not like gun and weapons channels. But for the sake of a free internet community we must stand together now and fight censorship.
YouTube needs to learn that their power is not limitless. They shall not manage to kill channels that have done nothing illegal.
Thanks for being here guys, United we Stand.
David "BigMonMulgrew" Mulgrew