YouTube has spoken out after it emerged that LGBTQ+ videos were being hidden from the site's Restricted Mode.
The video-sharing platform received negative attention over the weekend when it was discovered that LGBTQ+ videos - regardless of their content - weren't showing up in the controlled setting.
The feature aims to filter out "more mature content" and is switched off by default, but LGBTQ+ YouTubers and their supporters took to social media to point out what was happening after learning the setting was seemingly hiding their videos automatically.
YouTube has since addressed the controversy, stating that it is "looking into concerns".
A message to our community ... pic.twitter.com/oHNiiI7CVs- YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) March 20, 2017
"We are so proud to represent LGBTQ+ voices on our platform," it said in a statement. "They're a key part of YouTube what is all about.
"The intention of Restricted Mode is to filter out mature content for the tiny subset of users who want a more limited experience.
"LGBTQ+ videos are available in Restricted Mode, but videos that discuss more sensitive subjects may not be.
"We regret any confusion that has been caused and are looking into your concerns."
The issue became apparent when users noticed that most of their hidden videos in Restricted Mode apparently had the words "gay", "lesbian" or "bisexual" in the title, even if such titles didn't actually discuss sex.
For example, singers Tegan and Sara tweeted that some of their music videos had disappeared in Restricted Mode while YouTuber SeaineLove said that recent videos about her transition were blocked and Tyler Oakley has also criticised the site.
Looking forward to @youtube fixing this restricted content issue ASAP! To our fellow LGBTQ content creators + LGBTQ friends MUCH LOVE TO U!- Tegan and Sara (@teganandsara) March 19, 2017
until we hear back from @youtube, please actively check on all LGBTQ+ creators you're subscribed to & continue to support their content.- Tyler Oakley (@tyleroakley) March 19, 2017
YouTube users also claimed that titles such as 'What People Say When You Come Out As Bisexual' were being hidden on the site, and they weren't exactly impressed.
if youtube is restricting access to LGBTQ+ content, then please do everyone a favor & restrict every "what guys look for in girls" video too- venmo famous meat (@AlexisGZall) March 19, 2017
👏🏼LGBTQ CONTENT IS FAMILY FRIENDLY 👏🏼LGBTQ CONTENT IS FAMILY FRIENDLY 👏🏼LGBTQ CONTENT IS FAMILY FRIENDLY 👏🏼 @YouTube get it right- Sebb Argo (@SebbArgo) March 18, 2017
I thought YouTube was better than this... Their new "restricted mode" not showing the LGBTQ is just going to piss creators and fans off.- Adelaine M♡RIN (@AdelaineMorin) March 20, 2017
Again, youtube doesn't think it should hide accounts of white supremacists that leave racial slurs on videos, but LGBTQ+ videos are too much- Akilah Hughes (@AkilahObviously) March 20, 2017
Hey @YouTube you need to look into and fix your new LGBTQ restrictions asap. This is bad.- Dana Piccoli (@DanaPiccoli) March 19, 2017
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