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YouTube to expand teams reviewing extremist content

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Alphabet Inc’s YouTube said on Monday it plans to add more people next year to review and remove violent or extremist content on the video platform.

YouTube is taking stern actions to protect its users against inappropriate content with stricter policies and larger enforcement teams, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said in a blog post.

“We are also taking aggressive action on comments, launching new comment moderation tools and in some cases shutting down comments altogether,” Wojcicki said.

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The goal is to bring the total number of people across Google working to address content that might violate its policies to over 10,000 in 2018, she said.

YouTube last week updated its recommendation feature to spotlight videos users are likely to find the most gratifying, brushing aside concerns that such an approach can trap people in bubbles of misinformation and like-minded opinions.

YouTube had been facing a lot of criticism from advertisers and regulators and advocacy groups for failing to police content and account for the way its services shape public opinion.

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Egyptian pop singer jailed over music video inciting debauchery

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CAIRO — An Egyptian pop singer has been sentenced to two years in prison for ‘inciting debauchery’ in a racy music video clip.

A court in Cairo on Tuesday sentenced a little-known 21-year-old singer, Shyma Ahmed to two years in prison and fined 10,000 pounds ($560) for ‘inciting debauchery’ over a racy music video clip, a judicial source said.

The director of the clip, Mohamed Gamal, also received the same sentence. Both can appeal the ruling.

Shyma was arrested on November 18, police said, following complaints about the video for her song ‘I Have Issues.’ In the video, she appears in a mock classroom licking an apple and appearing to mimic fellatio on a banana in front of a chalkboard scrawled with ‘Class #69.’

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“Singer Shyma presents a lesson in depravity to youths,” said the Youm 7 newspaper in an article after the video was released. In a Facebook post at the time, Shyma apologized for the video and said she had not anticipated the backlash.

“I didn’t imagine all this would happen and that I would be subjected to such a strong attack from everyone, as a young singer… who has dreamt from a young age of being a singer,” she wrote.

The authorities have cracked down on some artists in Egypt using wide-ranging morality laws.

In 2015, a court jailed a female dancer to a year in prison for “inciting debauchery” in a raunchy music video for a song called ‘Let Go of My Hand.’

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