Patrons demand YouTube explanation for terminating ABS-CBN accounts

November 3, 2020 - 12:12 PM
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Person holding smartphone
Individual holding the YouTube application in a smartphone. (Pexels/Stock photo)

Calls to bring back the YouTube news channels of broadcasting giant ABS-CBN surfaced on social media after the accounts of ABS-CBN News and ANC 24/7 were found to be inaccessible on Tuesday morning.

Reports note that the YouTube channel of ABS-CBN News was terminated by the Google-owned video-sharing platform for reasons that are yet to be determined.

A screenshot of a video from the channel reads: “Video unavailable: This video is no longer available because the YouTube account associated with this video has been terminated.”

Another screenshot that was obtained reads the account “has been terminated for a violation of YouTube’s Terms of Services.”

As of this writing, both accounts of the network’s news channels can no longer be found on the website.

ABS-CBN said in a statement that it is “currently investigating” the matter and assured the public that it is “working closely with YouTube to resolve the problem.”

“In the meantime, you can catch our livestreams and news reports on the TeleRadyo Channel. Thank you for your patience and understanding,” the network added.

DZMM Teleradyo is the network’s flagship AM radio.

This was not the first time that ABS-CBN encountered problems in terms of delivering news to the public after its franchise renewal was denied in the Congress.

Last September, its news website, news.abs-cbn.com, became temporarily inaccessible although it could be accessed in Apple’s Safari browser and those with VPN installed.

Since the National Telecommunications issued a cease and desist order and the House of Representatives denied the network’s application for a fresh franchise that enables it to operate its broadcasting services last May and July, the media giant has shifted to digital platforms such as websites, YouTube and social media platforms to deliver news and entertainment.

Meanwhile, the closure of its news accounts on YouTube prompted Filipinos to call out the video-sharing platform as they ask for an explanation.

“Woah, @YouTubewhy did you take down ABS-CBN News? Do you know that we rely heavily on their news channel, especially now that we have a typhoon entering PAR AGAIN this week?” a Twitter user asked.

“@YouTube, why terminate ABS-CBN News? Andami daming fake news na nagkalat, ba’t ‘di ‘yon ang alisin niyo,” another online user said.

Others claimed that the news accounts were allegedly streaming about cryptocurrency before it was taken down.

“The same attack already targeted YouTube channels of other known content creators in the Philippines. Allegedly, these are sophisticated hackers tailored to obtain cryptocurrency from users using the name of other entities or personalities,” a Twitter account claimed.

Another Twitter user alleged of seeing the same thing when she turned on her television.

“Yes, this is what I have watched early this morning when I woke up (and) turned on the TV. I thought there was just a new show introduced,” she wrote with crying and eyeroll emojis.

As of this writing, the keyword “Ripple Foundation” is trending on local Twitter along with ABS-CBN News.

(Screenshot of Twitter Philippines trends list as of Tuesday morning by Interaksyon)