YouTube recovers from flood of explicit clips in ‘Porn Day’ attack

By Calvin Palmer

Reviewers at YouTube have been busy deleting thousands of pornographic clips after online pranksters from Internet forum 4Chan flooded the popular video-sharing site yesterday with sexually explicit clips.

The ‘Porn Day’ attack appears to be in retaliation against YouTube’s policy on removing copyright music videos unlawfully uploaded to the Web site by users.

One member of 4Chan, a forum that focuses on Japanese animé and manga, told the BBC, “I did it because YouTube keeps deleting music. It was part of a 4Chan raid.”

The clips containing sexual scenes and nudity were uploaded with titles referring to entertainers popular with youngsters, such as Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers. The videos start out innocently and then fade into R-rated material.

Pornography and nudity are banned from YouTube and these clips violate its terms of service.

A spokesman for YouTube said the Web site was in the process of removing the offensive material.

Although YouTube has review teams around the world, he said most of yesterday’s work removing the porn content was done in the U.S. because of time zone issues.

“YouTube is a community site used by millions of people in very positive ways,” he said. “Sadly as with any form of communication, there is a tiny minority of people who try to break the rules.

“We were aware of yesterday’s issue and removed the videos as they were brought to our attention through our flagging system, as we would any videos that violate our Community Guidelines. In addition, any account we discovered that was been set up specifically to attack YouTube was also disabled.”

The spokesman could not reveal how many videos have been removed following yesterday’s prank but it is reportedly in the thousands. It is understood the videos originated from all over the world but were uploaded on the same day in a coordinated effort.

[Based on reports by The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian.]

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