A day or so ago YouTube changed their policies regarding firearms. This is in addition to earlier changes to policy that banned the showing of bump fire stocks as well as the demonetization of many firearms-related YouTube channels.
Here is the new official policy:
Policies on content featuring firearms
YouTube prohibits certain kinds of content featuring firearms. Specifically, we don’t allow content that:
- Intends to sell firearms or certain firearms accessories through direct sales (e.g., private sales by individuals) or links to sites that sell these items. These accessories include but may not be limited to accessories that enable a firearm to simulate automatic fire or convert a firearm to automatic fire (e.g., bump stocks, gatling triggers, drop-in auto sears, conversion kits), and high capacity magazines (i.e., magazines or belts carrying more than 30 rounds).
- Provides instructions on manufacturing a firearm, ammunition, high capacity magazine, homemade silencers/suppressors, or certain firearms accessories such as those listed above. This also includes instructions on how to convert a firearm to automatic or simulated automatic firing capabilities.
- Shows users how to install the above-mentioned accessories or modifications.
Report content that violates this policy
You can report videos that you believe violate this policy by flagging the video.
Instructions on manufacturing ammunition? That is called reloading and has been a part of the shooting sports since time immemorial.
Instruction on manufacturing homemade silencers/suppressors? Those would be legally called Form 1 suppressors or silencers and are perfectly legal provided the $200 tax is paid along with the requisite background check. I currently have two Form 1’s approved and am deciding on how I want to proceed.
Insofar as reporting inappropriate videos, the gun prohibitionists have been trying to sabotage some of the more successful firearms-related YouTube channels. It has happened to Hickok45 and to others.
YouTube is a subsidiary of Google. Both are private companies entitled to set their own policies and discriminate against the gun culture if they so wish. This is not a constitutional issue as the First Amendment concerns only governmental abridgement of free speech. In the days of bulletin board systems (BBS) and private forums, this was not a real major issue. However, as social media has been increasingly aggregated into a few major corporate players – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google – their censorship is a problem. Unfortunately, there are not currently many viable alternatives. Full30 is great but it is limited. MeWe hasn’t really taken off as a Facebook alternative. The list goes on.
I suggest downloading those YouTube instructional videos that you like. There are plenty of ways to do it and I’m sure you can find them on the Internet. Content creators would be advised to back up their channels.
Probably the best comment on backing up a channel was this by Othais of C&R Arsenal.
Or you can go full bore like Ian and Karl.
UPDATE: Bloomberg Technology is covering this and included this comment from InRange TV aka Ian and Karl.
InRange TV, another channel devoted to firearms, wrote on its Facebook page that it would begin uploading videos to PornHub, an adult content website.
“YouTube’s newly released released vague and one-sided firearms policy makes it abundantly clear that YouTube cannot be counted upon to be a safe harbor for a wide variety of views and subject matter,” InRange TV wrote. “PornHub has a history of being a proactive voice in the online community, as well as operating a resilient and robust video streaming platform.”
If anyone knows about streaming video it is the porn industry!