Media company ABS-CBN is currently investigating the removal of its news channels from YouTube, which have been terminated today allegedly for violating the video platform’s terms of service.
ABS-CBN said in a statement that it is “aware” of the removal of ANC and ABS-CBN News channels from YouTube. ABS-CBN Entertainment, which streams entertainment programs, remains online.
“We are currently investigating this and working closely with YouTube to resolve the problem. In the meantime, you can catch our live streams and news reports on the TeleRadyo Channel. Thank you for your patience and understanding,” the statement said.
Because of the removal of the channels, ABS-CBN trended online today, with scores of Filipinos demanding an explanation from YouTube. Someone using the handle @KielGarciaaa tweeted, “Can you explain why this has happened? @YouTube? (ABS-CBN News).”
Paliwanag niyo nga kung bakit!? @YouTube!!?? (ABS-CBN News).
— Kiel Garcia🦋 (@KielGarciaaa) November 3, 2020
“Did YouTube just terminate ABS-CBN News account, a legitimate mainstream media news outlet in the Philippines? And this happens when credible news access is needed after being hit by a typhoon. At the same time, Youtube allows conspiracy theorists to thrive in their platform,” complained @superhopie.
Did YouTube just terminated ABS-CBN News account, a legitimate mainstream media news outlet in the Philippines? And this happens when credible news access is needed after being hit by a typhoon. At the same time, Youtube allows conspiracy theorists to thrive in their platform. pic.twitter.com/udJOLRLLIq
— 🦋 (@superhopie) November 3, 2020
Someone named @bimbyboi asked YouTube what ABS-CBN’s violation was. “Were you threatened by the government? Just want to ask. Thanks,” he added.
@YouTube what exactly was the violation of ABS-CBN news?? 🤔😱 Were you threatened by the government? Just want to ask. Thanks.
— elijah bimbao (@bimbyboi) November 3, 2020
ABS-CBN was forced to shut down after it failed to secure a new 25-year-license from Congress. Lawmakers have alleged that ABS-CBN violated a slew of laws, but critics have said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s dislike for the media company led to its closure. The company resorted to streaming news programs and entertainment shows on its YouTube channels.
However, Filipinos living in far-flung areas have reportedly said that they now lack access to important information because ABS-CBN was the only media company whose signal reaches their areas. Former Vice President Jejomar Binay tweeted that ABS-CBN’s closure “has left a noticeable void that has yet to be filled by the other networks,” which became apparent during the onslaught of typhoon Goni over the weekend.