YouTube said on Thursday that it would ban content that gave viewers instructions for “unsafe abortion methods,” ramping up efforts to police health care content in a post-Roe era.
The world’s largest video website will also remove content that “promotes false claims about abortion safety” in the next few weeks, the company said on Twitter, citing its medical misinformation policies.
YouTube said it would rely on “published guidance from health authorities” to make these determinations. In a new information panel, YouTube will also include a definition of abortion that says it is “done by a licensed health professional.”
Since the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June, at least eight states have banned abortion, with legislators in other states expected to propose laws to restrict access to the procedure. That has prompted supporters of abortion rights to seek workarounds for residents of those states.
With its policy decision, YouTube is trying to tamp down its role in storing or spreading guidance on dangerous methods. It will also provide more information from authoritative sources next to content about abortion.
Google, YouTube’s parent company, said this month that it would delete the location data when users visited abortion clinics and other sensitive sites. Supporters of abortion rights and privacy groups have been concerned that authorities in states that ban abortion could use Google-held personal data to prosecute abortion cases.
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