YouTube will now show information panels when Indian users search for topics that are prone to misinformation, it wrote in a YouTube Answer. Available in English and Hindi, the information is powered by fact-checkers (aka approved publishers), and tells users whether the information about a topic is true, false, or partly true.

  • The panels will show up on topic searches instead of on individual videos.
  • Videos containing misinformation will still be visible on the site and on search results, but YouTube will float the information panels for sensitive/controversial topics to inform users about the facts.

The information panel will include the claim, the publisher doing the fact-check, a summary of the publisher’s findings on a topic, and a link to the publisher’s article. Fact-check panels will be published only by YouTube approved publishers.According to BuzzFeed News, YouTube will show fact-checks from fact-checkers’ sites on YouTube panels, fact-checkers will not have to manually provide fact checked information to YouTube.

The Next Web searched for a “virus in paracetamol” and was able to see an information panel by The Quint alerting users of the hoax. However, MediaNama was unable to see the information panel when we searched for the same query. It is unclear whether the feature is available to all users yet.

YouTube has not disclosed which fact-checkers it is working with, although the BuzzFeed News story states that many of YouTube’s fact-checkers also work with Facebook. Currently, Facebook works with seven fact-checkers – The India Today Group, Vishvas.news, Factly, Newsmobile, Fact Crescendo, BOOM Live, and Agence France-Presse.

Google has created a separate Trending feed for India for non-English Internet users. Most countries have the same Trending feed for YouTube.

On YouTube, India tops content flagging from users

Ever since October 2017, India has topped the list of countries from which YouTube has received the most number of flags for suspected violations of its community guidelines. Google’s transparency reports show that in the period October-December 2017, YouTube received 9 million flags, this number increased to 11 million on October-December 2018. However, YouTube has not provided the India specific numbers for flags.

Also read about Google’s Q4FY19 earnings and YouTube’s contribution to it here