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In apparent 'error,' YouTube has been censoring comments critical of Chinese Communist Party

The alleged mistake has been happening for over six months

Updated: May 27, 2020 - 3:22pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

YouTube has for the last six months been deleting comments critical of the Chinese Communist Party, a protocol the company claimed was an "error" that it intends to investigate. 

YouTube confirmed to The Verge this week that it had been "deleting comments that contain certain Chinese-language phrases related to criticism of the country’s ruling Communist Party," the website reported. That protocol "appears to be an error in our enforcement systems and we are investigating," a spokesman told the site. 

Comments that contain popular Chinese-language slang for criticizing the nation's one-state ruling party – phrases such as "communist bandit" and "50-cent party," the latter a slander alleging monetary compensation for Communist propaganda – are allegedly disappearing after several seconds of being posted in videos. English-language versions of those comments are reportedly remaining up. 

Since 2009 YouTube has been blocked on the Chinese internet, though it is still accessible via tech workarounds.