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FTC reportedly investigating YouTube for violations of children's privacy

A picture of the YouTube logo.
Photo by Olly Curtis/Future Publishing via Getty Images

The Federal Trade Commission is in the late stages of a probe into YouTube's handling of children's content following multiple complaints from privacy advocates, the Washington Post reports.

Details: The complaints allege that YouTube fails to protect children's privacy and has partaken in improper data collection. The investigation, which could result in fines, has reportedly catalyzed discussions on children users that include overhauls to recommended video algorithms.

The Wall Street Journal also reported that executives at Google, which owns YouTube, are considering relocating all kids content to YouTube Kids — a separate platform with safeguards for age-appropriate material. But such a move would be costly and difficult to execute considering the overwhelming mass of content that would have to be addressed.

  • The FTC declined to comment on the matter, citing a rule prohibiting the confirmation or denial of non-pubic probes.

Between the lines: YouTube has already been under scrutiny for its treatment of hate speech, racism content, fake news and more. While the company has made steps to try and address the issue, news of the investigation will only bring further light to the lack of regulation that content on the site currently faces.

Go deeper: Why YouTube needs principles