With More People Turning to YouTube for News Content, That Could Fuel the Rise of Fringe Beliefs


As the Presidential Elections campaign keeps gaining momentum, this is a specially pertinent study from the team at pew research. According to the latest study, over 12600 US citizens which is more than quarter the adults of the US get their news from Youtube.

Pew YouTube news study

As you can see in the visual above, a few people use YouTube as their first source for news, most the respondents see it very important to stay up to date. This means that now, there are many people who choose YouTube as their reliable source of news.

The study shows that the 377 most popular YouTube channels for news are a mix between news organizations with a percentage of 49%, and 42% of independent channels, and finally some other organizations 9%.

Definitely, Pew stated that the consumption of news content from independent and established channels in total is equal, while Pew notes that independent channels are not likely to cover conspiracy theories, for an instant, QAnon.

Pew YouTube news study

QAnon has been banned from Twitter and Facebook after some concerns that it’s making violent actions and planning further division in the US. And this is not the only instance, as there are previous reports that highlighted YouTube as a major enabler of COVID-19 false theories, anti-vax content, flat earth explainers, 9/11 truther videos, and so on.

YouTube, to be fair, is working to restrict the reach of this sort of content. However, with more than 300 hours of video uploaded on the platform every minute, YouTube has the ability to ban all of these videos that are highly spread between billions of users.

And unfortunately, in 2020, YouTube is being a source of even more critical information. Lately, YouTube stated that people watching YouTube from TV have increased due to the COVID-19 lockdowns.

That means that more people get critical news from Youtube, and as you can see, that may have serious impacts respecting unproven movements and theories.

So, what is the solution for this?

This is the major question for the next news ensuring informed debate and consumption. Youtube and Facebook serve a lot of people, and they have the potential to erode official data and increase concerning, conflicting movements that that could have the main influence on society.

Still, it seems unlikely, in a lot of ways, to recommend that Facebook and YouTube can lead to world conflicts and protests. However, the proof shows that this is definitely happening already.