Monday, February 18, 2008

Video Removed: Inappropriate Content

I was surprised yesterday to see an email in my inbox from YouTube titled "Video Removed: Inappropriate Content". What had I, an honest and decent citizen done wrong? The email stated:

Dear Member:

After being flagged by members of the YouTube community and reviewed by YouTube staff, the video below has been removed due to its inappropriate nature.

Cock Fight (3):

Please refer to our Terms of Use, Community Guidelines, and the Help Center for more information on what video material is not permitted on YouTube.

- The YouTube Team

This was one of my three videos I posted from a cockfight. The first showed the pre-fight spectacle in the arena, the second showed footage from the actual fight (these two are not yet deemed inappropriate, as far as I know), and the third showed the process of determining the loser (or rather, making sure it was actually dead). I was surprised to see the videos rocket in popularity, with thousands of views, suggesting that lots of people are interested in seeing this sort of thing (or on policing it, apparently).

So what are these Terms of Use that I apparently violated? You can see the Community Guidelines here. The ones that were potentially violated were the following, I'm guessing:
# Don't post videos showing bad stuff like animal abuse, drug abuse, or bomb making.
# Graphic or gratuitous violence is not allowed. If your video shows someone getting hurt, attacked, or humiliated, don't post it.

I personally don't think that the video fits in either category. Here's my response to YouTube:

I believe this video has been removed in error. In my opinion, there is nothing particularly inappropriate about it, based on the YouTube guidelines. I understand that people may be offended by cockfighting and/or constitute it as animal abuse, and I don't necessarily disagree with them. My video shows footage from a cockfight in the Philippines, where I am a Peace Corps volunteer, and where cockfighting is a major part of the culture, whether Americans are offended by it or not. I posted the video not to glorify cockfighting, indeed, that was the only time I have ever attended such a fight, but rather to share a part of Philippine culture with friends and family in North America. I urge you to reconsider your decision.

...what do you guys think?

Nobody has commented. No response from YouTube. Which confirms my suspicion that nobody really cares about this topic: either you watch the video, or you don't, but the point is that there's no problem with it being there. I'll probably post it again.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

A special card...
captured moment...
beyond caring...

The Special thoughts in warm special words in this Special Edition Hallmark Card, plus a free personal accident insurance coverage for 1 year worth P25,000, tells you how much I CARE for YOU.

Accidental Death, Dismemberment, Disablement
and/or Loss of Sight.............................. Php 25,000.00
Accidental Burial Assistance....................... Php 2,500.00

Ahh, how romantic!