American News Aug 1, 2021 6:51 PM EST

YouTube suspends Sky News Australia over COVID-19 coverage

Sky News Australia was temporarily suspended on YouTube for pandemic-related content at odds with the video sharing platform's COVID-19 policies.

YouTube suspends Sky News Australia over COVID-19 coverage
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Sky News Australia was temporarily suspended on YouTube for pandemic-related content at odds with the video sharing platform's COVID-19 policies.

"Sky News Australia acknowledges YouTube's right to enforce its policies and looks forward to continuing to publish its popular news and analysis content to its subscribers shortly," said Sky News about its one-week suspension in a press statement. YouTube confirmed the suspension, according to Reuters.

"We apply our policies equally for everyone and in accordance with these policies and our long-standing strikes system, removed videos from and issued a strike to Sky News Australia's channel," said a YouTube spokesperson.

The one-week suspension came on Thursday, following a Sky News Australia interview that allegedly encouraged viewers to use hydroxychloroquine or ivermectin to treat COVID-19 without providing context, Reuters reported.

Sky News Australia said on its site the temporary suspension stemmed from publishing opinion content the Big Tech giant disagrees with. Among the videos "deemed unpalatable for societal consumption" were debates around whether masks were effective and whether lockdowns were justified when considering adverse health outcomes, Sky News Australia digital editor Jack Houghton wrote.

Houghton claimed that "most" of the removed Sky News Australia content was from 2020 and that YouTube "is looking at the debates and discussions through the lens of contemporary health advice."

The television channel is operated by Australian News Channel Pty Ltd. and is a subsidiary of News Corp Australia. The television channel's YouTube account touts over 1.86 million subscribers on the platform to date.

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