Target: Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube
Goal: Thank YouTube for recognizing its error and making plans to fix it by listening to its community of creators/viewers make rightful complaints after many LGBTQ+ videos were labeled as restricted content.
Quickly after the YouTube creator and viewer community called the company out for blocking LGBTQ+ videos, and shortly after this ForceChange petition was made, YouTube apologized for the errors within its restricted mode feature and promised to work to fix it.
Numerous LGBTQ+ themed videos and other videos by LGBTQ+ creators were blocked under the site’s restricted mode. Once this was discovered, the community was rightfully upset and confused by why YouTube was blocking this content.
YouTube initially released a comment that stated that “the intention of Restricted Mode is to filter out more mature content for the tiny upset of viewers who want a more limited experience”. That explanation, however, did not explain why videos like Tyler Oakley’s “8 Black LGBTQ+ Trailblazers Who Inspire Me” and Ash Hardell’s “Her Vows” were blocked though they contain nothing remotely explicit.
As a result of the backlash from the community and with the help of various petitions, YouTube was forced into realizing that the Restricted Mode feature (originally introduced in 2010) was no longer working properly. Since then, Johanna Wright, VP of Product Management for the company, released another statement saying that “many of you have raised concerns about Restricted Mode and your content being unfairly impacted. The bottom line is that this feature isn’t working the way it should. We’re sorry and we’re going to fix it.”
Sign this petition to thank YouTube for listening to its creators and to its audience and for promising to fix Restricted Mode and stop it from blocking LGBTQ+ content.
Dear Susan Wojcicki,
We appreciate yours and YouTube’s ability to acknowledge the error you made with Restricted Mode. Blocking LGBTQ+ content and falsely labeling it as inappropriate for certain viewers is not fair to that community — which has done so much to make your company thrive.
We hope that this error is quickly fixed, as you claim it will be, and that you continue to uplift the LGBTQ+ community and provide it with a platform where everyone is able to fully be who they are. We understand that systems do make mistakes sometimes and that is why we were all so passionate about pointing it out to you. Thank you for listening. Should the error not be fixed, you can expect to continue to hear from all of us until it is.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Tymon Oziemblewski