By Archis Chowdhury

YouTube failed to act on hate speech and misinformation violations by far-right channel Sudarshan News, and instead shared ad revenue with the channel, reveals a report shared exclusively with Decode.

The report – a joint effort by Dalit Solidarity Forum, Indian American Muslim Council, India Civil Watch International, Hindus for Human Rights, and Tech Justice Law Project – highlights 26 videos published by Sudarshan News, that were reported for violating YouTube’s policies on hate speech, misinformation and monetisation, leading up to and during the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections. Notably, 17 of these videos were published during the polling phases.

The videos propagated conspiracy theories and dehumanising content against Muslims, while pushing misinformation and debunked claims against the Indian National Congress and other opposition leaders. Despite these violations, none of the videos faced any actions and continued to thrive on YouTube, accumulating a total of 3.5 million views by the time the report was published.

Business Of Hate

Launched in 2005, Sudarshan News, a privately owned channel, is known for its pro-Hindutva nationalist stance, and has been pulled up for spreading misinformation, hate speech and conspiracy theories with strong Islamophobic undertones and dog-whistling. The channel currently has 1.83 million subscribers.

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