On Friday, in response to the ongoing protests around the United States, YouTube announced its pledge to donate US$1 million to combat racism and violence in the country.
“We stand in solidarity against racism and violence. When members of our community hurt, we all hurt. We’re pledging $1M in support of efforts to address social injustice,” read the post.
While the tweet itself did not specify how this donation would be made, clarification came later on Sunday when YouTube released a video entitled, “Stand Against Racial Injustice.”
The mentioned video is simple in its presentation, with white text appearing upon a black background and piano music underlaid.
The last two sentences, which appear in the video, state the following: “Join YouTube in donating to the Center for Policing Equity (CPE) or visit PolicingEquity.org to learn more. Everyone can use their voice for change.”
According to CPE’s website, the organization has partnered with more than 25 police departments across the nation to collect research to inform various police reforms that could alter discriminatory practices and decrease instances of police brutality.
It may be worth mentioning that YouTube’s donation to the CPE does come after criticism that the platform’s algorithm encourages racial bias and extremism.
The New York Times, for example, reported in 2019 on the dangers of YouTube’s algorithm which determines which videos show up in the sidebar alongside the video that a viewer is watching. The sidebar videos on YouTube attempt to keep a user on the platform for as long as possible, which is why suggested videos are often provocative or serve to confirm a user’s preexisting biases.
Content creators on the YouTube platform have also joined in on the effort to donate to police reform goals or related endeavors.
The Jenna & Julien Podcast directed viewers to the Minnesota Freedom Fund, which is a fund bailing out people from jail who protested for justice for George Floyd. Meanwhile, another YouTube channel Clevver News, directed viewers toward a GoFundMe for Floyd’s family as well as other bailout funds.
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