“We’re really, really sorry, but if we treat this as the line for abuse, do you have any idea how much material we’d have to delete?” really doesn’t come across as terribly heartfelt when you get right down to it.
Again and until they get this shit right, YouTube and Google can fuck right off of hitching their corporate wagon to the Pride PR Parade.
So, they’re not actually sorry as a company, and however “sorry” their CEO is (for there being an outcry), they are still continuing to defend their decision and to refuse to enforce their own harassment policy. And, more importantly, still continue to misunderstand the entire situation, making the borderline-racist statement that if they enforce their own harassment policy against someone bullying another content creator, they would have to remove all rap videos with bad language (!??!). What the holy fuck, YouTube.
No, it isn’t a debate about free speech. You’re the one trying to make it into one. YouTube has no legal obligation to promote free speech or free expression. They are fully empowered to tell these people that are harassing, bullying, or otherwise abusing others to fuck off but they aren’t and we all know why.
To debate the role of free speech in a capitalist society, there’s a thread for that already:
What really struck me was how much she tried to emphasize how hard all of this has been for YouTube. It’s just so stupefyingly patronizing and insulting to answer the question of “are you sorry for the harm you’ve done?” with “what you’re missing is how much it hurt me to do it”.
IANAL, but it seems to me they are opening themselves up to the mother of all lawsuits. If just one kid is harmed (or bullied into self-harm) from this homophobic bullshit, then they don’t stand a chance in court. One of the first things that will be asked is, “Did you follow your own SOPs regarding bullying and harassment?” And, wiggle as they might, the answer is “no.”