YouTube investing $25M in journalism and pushing 'authoritative' sources

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YouTube's role in promoting conspiracy theories has flared up in recent months.

This money will go towards employing experts to help develop news-specific features, funding sustainable video operations in 20 global markets, and expanding YouTube's existing support team that are dedicated to training and assisting news organizations around the world.

To combat conspiracy theories, YouTube will start displaying information from third-party sources like Wikipedia and Encyclopedia Britannica next to videos about "well-established historical and scientific topics that have often been subject to misinformation", including the Oklahoma City bombing and the moon landing. As a result, over the next few weeks YouTube users in the US will see short previews in YouTube search results with links to the full news article. The managers said that shortly after a news event occurs, YouTube will provide a brief preview of related articles in YouTube's search results that will link to the full article.

The company announced in a blog post Monday that it plans to change how it works to "make authoritative sources readily accessible".

Titled "Developing news" it will appear immediately under the search field, above the list of video results.

YouTube also has begun testing features that distribute local news in the YouTube app for connected TVs across 25 media markets in the U.S. We " re looking forward to having more join as we convene the group in the coming weeks", added Robert Kyncl, Chief Business Officer.

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The YouTube effort comes as Google and Facebook - companies that drew heavy criticism following the 2016 United States election for failing to prevent the propagation of false news - have been taking a series of steps to promote verifiable journalism.

"News organisations including Vox Media, Jovem Pan and India Today are early members of the working group".

The Breaking News "shelf" on the YouTube home page will show video from news sources about an event that has just occurred (check out the image at the top of this article).

As part of the partnership with MediaWise, six YouTube creators - including John Green, Ingrid Nilsen and Mark Watson - will be creating videos meant to raise awareness about digital literacy and help educate teens about identifying legit sources of news and information. These two new features are now available in 17 countries including the U.S., U.K., France, Italy, Japan, India, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, and more.

Mohan said the new features are in effect in 17 countries, including the USA, and "we're looking to double that number in the coming months".

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