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YouTube is now blocking Russian state-funded media around the world

YouTube is now blocking Russian state-funded media around the world

After blocking channels like RT and Sputnik in Europe earlier this month, YouTube says it will start blocking Russian government-funded YouTube channels altogether. The company also announced that it would remove material about the Russian invasion of Ukraine that denies, minimizes or trivializes "well-documented violent incidents".

At the time of writing, two American Verge employees were still able to access livestreams from RT, a channel that YouTube's interface notes "is funded in whole or in part by the Russian government." According to a tweet from the YouTube Insider account, the change is supposed to be effective immediately, but the company says it expects its systems to take some time to roll it out.

Several platforms, including YouTube, blocked European users from accessing content created by Russian state media outlets. The Russian government has responded to tech companies' policies by blocking or limiting access to sites such as Facebook or Twitter. Today, it announced that it will ban Instagram in the country from March 14.

While not being able to access content from channels like RT and Sputnik around the world is an enhancement from YouTube, Google has already made it so that channels can't monetize their videos. In late February, the company said that Russian state media outlets would not be allowed to run ads on their videos. Last week, Google took it a step further by halting all ad sales in Russia.

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