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YouTube removing videos with extremist content

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YouTube has taken down as many as 50,000 videos featuring radical Islamic preacher named Anwar al-Awlaki who was killed in drone strike in 2011.

According to the New York Times, Awlaki was renowned for preaching violence as a religious job. However, his family denied that he was a terrorist at the time of his death.

The remaining videos are mainly documentaries and News items said—New York Times.

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Awlaki posted various types of videos on YouTube, some videos explicitly calls for violence, however, others were based on commentary on Islam and Islamic history.

Most of the Awlaki videos have been completely removed from the network, Awlaki might have been banned from owning the channel on YouTube if he was alive, because the US and UK governments declared him as a terrorist.

The first complaint was received in 2009 by Anti-extremism groups about the videos posted by Awlaki which contained extremist content, but until the last year, YouTube was able to find videos with explicitly violent content.

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After a long series of complaints and reports from the groups and activists working to counter extremism, YouTube took action to find and take down the content.

YouTube deserved appreciation for purging videos from YouTube—said the researcher, George Washington University, Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens. YouTube user-friendly design and approach often led people to land on Awlaki’s videos. However, there are still many other video sites and social networks where his videos can be found—he added.

Mark Goodman

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