Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube.
Michael Newberg | CNBC
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said Thursday that the platform will lift the suspension of former President Donald Trump’s account once the risk of violence diminishes.
The Google-owned video-sharing site first suspended the account on January 12, nearly a week after the insurrection in the United States Capitol as lawmakers sought to certify President Joe Biden’s electoral victory. Facebook and Twitter had previously suspended Trump’s accounts, citing the risk of further violence. YouTube said that Trump’s account had attempted to upload a video that violated its policies, granting it an automatic seven-day suspension under its policies. He later extended that suspension.
“I want to confirm that we will lift the suspension of the channel … when we determine that the risk of violence has decreased,” Wojcicki said at an event organized by the Atlantic Council, a think tank. He said it will continue to be subject to the same policies as other accounts.
“It is difficult for me to say where we are today, but it is quite clear that at this moment, where we are, there is still that high risk of violence,” he said.
Wojcicki said the company will look at a variety of signals to determine if the risk has changed. These include statements and warnings from the government, increased police presence, and rhetorical YouTube monitors on its own platform.
While Wojcicki made it clear that he hopes YouTube will reinstate Trump’s account, Twitter has said that Trump’s suspension is permanent. Facebook has said its suspension is indefinite and has referred the ban to its independent Oversight Board for review. Until it receives a suggestion from that board, Facebook said Trump’s suspension would remain in effect.
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