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YouTube launches new features for Indian news transparency

It has expanded the information panels in English and Hindi.

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MUMBAI: The Google-owned video streaming platform, YouTube, has announced key features to make news experience more transparent and contextual in poll-bound India. The streaming platform stated that it is going to make authoritative news sources readily available on search results and homepage, provide fact checking from eligible publishers in English and Hindi and furnish the funding details of news publishers, according to a Mint report.

YouTube said it is highlighting authoritative sources such as recognised media news outlets on the top news shelf when a user tries to search for a news event or development. The breaking news shelf will highlight videos from authoritative news organisations directly on the YouTube homepage. Both features are currently launched in more than 30 countries, including India in both English and Hindi.

The platform has extended its fact-checking service to YouTube news by partnering with recognised news outlets which will help provide context to users about any news development or information. YouTube said it has expanded the information panels in English and Hindi to bring fact checks from eligible publishers to YouTube in India. These information panels on certain events, topics, and publishers will appear alongside search results and videos.

YouTube director and head of news partnerships Tim Katz said in a blog post, “In the last few years, news has become an integral part of YouTube’s experience for millions of Indians online. With improved connectivity and low cost of data, watch-time of India’s authoritative news sources has more than tripled over the past two years. We have been hard at work to ensure that we are responsibly growing news and supporting news publishers on YouTube."

He further added, “This specific information panel aims to provide context on fresh topics that are prone to misinformation. The fact checks we surface rely on the open source Schema.org Claim Review markup process. By following this process, any eligible publisher can contribute fact check articles that could show in search results on Google Search, Google News, and now, YouTube."

YouTube will also show if a video channel is owned by a news publisher that is funded by a government, an information panel will surface that indicates that the publisher is “funded in whole or in part" or a “public broadcast service", with a link to the publisher's Wikipedia page. This information panel will be displayed on the watch page of all the videos on its channel.

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