On Google Podcasts, a Buffet of Hate

When Apple bans a podcast, corresponding to Mr. Jones’s, it removes the RSS feed from its listing. Google Podcasts says it’s unwilling to take that step besides in a slender set of instances.

The companies’s content material coverage compares its perform to Google Search’s aggregation of hyperlinks. Until a podcast violates the foundations that apply to hyperlinks showing in Google Search, most of that are based mostly on authorized restrictions, it can stay on Google Podcasts. Google does draw distinctions relating to which podcasts it can promote, and thus make simpler to search out. It says it doesn’t suggest content material that’s “inappropriate, insensitive, or offensive in nature,” and goes on to quote particular areas of concern, together with content material that’s harassing, hateful, misleading or harmful.

Although the corporate likens its podcast platform to look, Google Podcast’s personal product description notes important variations, together with the power to control playback pace, create playlists and obtain and retailer content material.

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However there’s no less than one connection between Google Podcasts and Google Search. In 2019, Google started integrating podcasts into search outcomes utilizing its personal platform, making it doable to play content material straight from the outcomes web page. All podcasts, together with these that includes hate speech, presently profit from this characteristic beneath Google’s coverage.

Within the early days, content material moderation in podcasting was nearly nonexistent. Apple, the trade’s largest and most influential participant, which added assist for podcasts to iTunes in 2005, at first paid little consideration to the nascent ecosystem, opting to serve largely as a supply car.

The corporate’s benign neglect was a boon for a lot of creators. In style comedians (Adam Carolla, Marc Maron) and public radio exiles (Kaitlin Prest, “The Heart”; Nick van der Kolk, “Love + Radio”) took benefit of the medium’s low barrier to entry to search out audiences. Many prized freedom of expression, unburdened by the Federal Communications Fee that regulates radio and tv broadcasters.

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