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Controversy over a video removed by YouTube highlights the challenges in preventing the spread of misinformation related to the coronavirus.
This week, the Alphabet-owned site removed a video of a press conference held by two doctors, Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi of Accelerated Urgent Care in Bakersfield, Calif., that had been posted by a local TV station.
Before its removal, the video had gone “viral.” The clip drew more than 5.4 million views, according to the TV station, KERO. Even billionaire Elon Musk, who tweeted in March that the “coronavirus panic is dumb," shared the video and wrote the doctors “make good points.”
CORONAVIRUS MISINFORMATION PROMPTS YOUTUBE TO ADD FACT CHECKS TO SEARCH RESULTS
A YouTube spokesperson told DailyMail.com that the video had been flagged for violating its “Community Guidelines” because it “disputes the efficacy of local healthy authority recommended guidance on social distancing.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended social distancing and other guidelines for preventing the spread of the coronavirus, which health officials said can be carried by people showing mild or no symptoms.
A spokesperson for the website added that content that provides more context – educational, documentary, scientific or artistic – is not removed under the guidelines, DailyMail.com reported. The spokesperson said news coverage of the interview with added context had not been removed.