By Micaiah Bilger
YouTube recently slapped a new label on pro-life videos, supposedly with the aim of countering “misinformation” about the controversial topic.
But the big blue disclaimer box that appears below the videos directs viewers to a biased website that describes the killing of unborn babies as “abortion care” and refers women to a pro-abortion group for more information.
“It biases viewers against their messaging, to prejudge and dismiss their arguments before they’ve even heard them,” pro-life advocate Clare Morell told the Catholic News Agency.
Morell, a policy analyst with the Ethics and Public Policy Center Technology and Human Flourishing Project, said the disclaimer shows YouTube’s bias against pro-life organizations and the information that they share.
“Rather than allowing for free speech and debate in today’s modern public square, YouTube is preferring one side and position over the other by adding these disclaimers. And attempting to prejudice viewers against the pro-life position,” she told CNA.
LifeNews noticed the label on videos from prominent pro-life organizations including Live Action, Students for Life, Focus on the Family and the Equal Rights Institute. Videos about Pope Francis and at least one from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops have it, too, according to CNA.
The label also appears on videos by pro-abortion groups and leftist news sites, including Vice and Planned Parenthood.
According to YouTube, it will be included on videos about abortion “regardless of what opinions or perspectives are expressed.” The company said it places labels on videos about topics that are “prone to misinformation,” and the labels include information from “independent, third-party partners, to give more context on a topic.”
YouTube’s label begins with “Context: Abortion health information” in bold letters, followed by a link to the National Library of Medicine, a website run by the pro-abortion Biden administration. The website refers women to American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists several times for more information. However, ACOG is heavily involved in abortion advocacy.
“An abortion is a procedure to end a pregnancy. It uses medicine or surgery to remove the embryo or fetus and placenta from the uterus,” the label states. “The procedure is done by a licensed healthcare professional. For information purposes only. Consult your local medical authority for advice.”
Right now, pro-life groups that oppose the label have few options to contest it if they want to continue using YouTube as a platform.
Morell said federal law gives companies like YouTube “broad-sweeping immunity from publisher liability,” so pro-life organizations cannot sue them.
“Pro-life groups are left without legal recourse for contesting this editorial interference by YouTube. If YouTube wants to add information to content, then it shouldn’t get to have legal immunity for those edits,” she told CNA.
In July, YouTube announced a new global policy to remove “false” and harmful abortion content, including videos that mention infertility and breast cancer as potential risks of abortion, according to Axios. The website, which is owned by Google, also said it will begin removing content promoting dangerous do-it-yourself abortion methods and establish a new panel to “provide additional context to viewers on abortion-related videos.”
The problem is that many who control the spread of information, including traditional news outlets, websites and pro-abortion politicians, only view pro-abortion sources as authoritative, and sometimes not even them when their research contradicts the abortion industry’s narrative on issues like fetal pain. Meanwhile, studies that do not fit the narrative are ignored.
Pro-life advocates continually have been targets of censorship by big tech platforms like YouTube, Google, Facebook and Twitter. Over the summer, Heartbeat International said Facebook removed its Abortion Pill Reversal information page without warning, claiming it violated the company’s community standards.