YouTube targets multiple pro-Trump musical artists

YouTube targets multiple pro-Trump musical artists
Pro-Trump singers Joy Villa and Kaya Jones said YouTube is censoring their music videos. (Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)

Singer Joy Villa took to Twitter on Saturday to let her fans and fellow conservatives know that YouTube threatened to remove her song “Make America Great Again” for privacy violations. She also said YouTube removed views from fellow Donald Trump supporter Kaya Jones’ song “What the Heart Don’t Know.”

Villa tweeted a copy of the email she received from YouTube, which told her she had 48 hours to edit the violated content in her video. If she failed to comply, the YouTube team would review the complaint and may remove the video.

Villa decided to re-upload the video to YouTube despite the social media website’s warning.

“I personally shot each beautiful American in my video and received written and verbal consent from everyone, and they all knew what the project was,” Villa told TheBlaze by email Saturday. “The video’s been up for a few weeks, yet no one said anything until now.”

Jones also took to Twitter to get the word out about YouTube censoring her YouTube views and promoting Katy Perry’s latest music video.

According to Villa, Jones video views have “systematically decreased over the last 2 days, with no explanation.”

Jones’ views were allegedly at 62,000 yesterday, 53,000 today and are now back up to 55,0000.

Villa said she has received reports from her YouTube subscribers who say they no longer see her videos in their feeds. Although her subscriber count has continually increased, Villa said her views have dropped from roughly 20,000 per week to 2,000 per week.

“We have joined together in fighting this censorship because we know we are the only voice pro-American artists out there, and this is not a coincidence,” Villa told TheBlaze. “Katy Perry’s video has been pushed to the top of each search for Kaya’s videos, even though Perry’s videos have nothing to do with hers.”

“YouTube is censoring Pro America artists,” Villa added.

Villa and Jones took to Periscope to explain their side of the story.

According to Villa, YouTube censoring her and Jones is impacting their livelihood. They don’t have the same funding as artists like Katy Perry so their reach is organic, Villa explained on Periscope. They use social media to spread the word about their music and they’re paid based on the number of YouTube views their videos receive.

Both Villa and Jones are encouraging fans to purchase their songs on Amazon.

Here is Villa’s “Make America Great Again” song:

Kaya Jones and YouTube did not immediately respond to TheBlaze’s request for comment.

UPDATE: 11:20 p.m. EST

Kaya Jones provided the following statement to TheBlaze:

My video for “What the Heart Don’t Know” had over 62k views last night [Friday] and I have seen it drop as low as 53,000. The numbers fluctuate throughout the day but should be as high as 100,000 views today. YouTube is choosing to censor by manipulating and changing the algorithm towards my views as well as recommending Katy Perry and moving her up the queue. YouTube funds Katy Perry who has 200 million viewers.

I’m disheartened that a video that supports military and military families would be attacked in this manner. I’m pro-America, pro-military, pro-police officer and pro-Trump and it is really disheartening. I’m heartbroken that a video that pays respect to military families that endure a loss would not be supported by America, but is instead being attacked by Americans.

UPDATE Aug. 27 10:30 p.m. EST

A spokesperson for YouTube provided the following statement to TheBlaze:

Viewcounts are important to us here at YouTube. We take action against views generated in a manner that is not compliant with our policies, including attempts to artificially inflate video viewcounts by third parties.

Privacy is also incredibly important to us. YouTube offers a privacy complaint process, where first parties can let us know if videos or comments on the site violate their privacy. We review these complaints on a case-by-case basis. In all cases we notify video uploaders to see if they want to remove, edit, or blur material in the video before we complete our review.

When asked about Kaya Jones and Joy Villa’s specific accounts, the spokesperson clarified the company’s position:

With 400 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, we don’t comment specifically on individual videos, but we work to clarify our policies when there is confusion.

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