Monday, September 20

YouTube censorship of images of Nazi Holocaust victims as “inappropriate” reaches Brussels

The horror suffered in the Nazi concentration camps is only for adults, according to YouTube, which imposed this restriction on several videos of journalist Carlos Hernández, creator of the Deportados channel, in which he recovers the memory of the Spaniards who passed through the Nazi extermination centers.

And this Tuesday the case has reached the European Commission as a result of a parliamentary question from the PSOE MEP Iban García del Blanco, who takes advantage of the process of future community digital legislation.

“The Commission’s standard on digital services will include safeguards for those users whose content has been erroneously censored or removed by the platforms and will require transparency in the algorithms used by them,” Del Blanco states in his writing: “In August, YouTube censored some documentaries by the Spanish journalist Carlos Hernández with the testimonies of survivors of the Nazi concentration camps. After requesting to review this decision, the platform reaffirmed the censorship of the content, without giving the author the option to appeal. Meanwhile, some studies seem to indicate that the algorithm of YouTube recommendation contributes to the dissemination of videos praising fascism and hatred towards certain groups “.

Next, the MEP sends the following questions to the Community Executive: “What is the Commission’s position regarding the possibility that digital platforms permanently censor or eliminate informative documentary material on the Holocaust or other historical events? What measures will the Commission take Commission to protect educational material against the filters of these platforms that may consider it as violent material not suitable for minors and proceed to its censorship or elimination? ”

Among the restricted videos is the one starring the Barcelona-born Cristóbal Soriano, who survived Mauthausen and the sinister Gusen subfield, known as “the Mauthausen slaughterhouse”, where he tried to save his brother who would end up murdered in the gas chamber. Also that of José Marfil, captured by the Nazis in the Battle of Dunkirk and transferred to Mauthausen with his father, who would become the first Spaniard to die in that camp. Until his death, at the age of 97, he kept dreaming about what he had experienced: “When I wake up I feel happy. I have spent all night in the fields and joy comes when I get up in the morning and see that I am not there”, narrates in the interview.

“We cannot whitewash or minimize what happened; on the contrary, it is necessary to know what it was,” said Carlos Hernández when he learned of YouTube’s censorship, and recalled that “many teachers” use these videos as teaching material for students and himself he has toured dozens of Spanish institutes to give talks in which he has exposed them. “Maybe you don’t put it on a five or six-year-old, but from ten, eleven, twelve, yes.” He gives the example of one of the popular classroom films about the Holocaust, Schindler’s list, “which has some brutal scenes” and which is recommended in Spain from 13 years of age. “That is the reality. Are we going to sweeten Nazism to the young?” Hernández wondered.

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