“12 people account for the lion’s share of anti-vaccination propaganda posted to three of the leading social media outlets,” NPR reported in 2021, citing a study from a London-based group opposed to online hate and disinformation.”
But this week Ars Technica reports that one of those 12 “lost a lawsuit attempting to force YouTube to provide access to videos that were removed from the platform after YouTube banned his channels.”
Joseph Mercola had tried to argue that YouTube owed him more than $75,000 in damages for breaching its own user contract and denying him access to his videos. However, in an order dismissing Mercola’s complaint, U.S. magistrate judge Laurel Beeler wrote that according to the contract Mercola signed, YouTube was “under no obligation to host” Mercola’s content after terminating his channel in 2021 “for violating YouTube’s Community Guidelines by posting medical misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines.”
“The court found no breach because ‘there is no provision in the Terms of Service that requires YouTube to maintain particular content’ or be a ‘storage site for users’ content,'” Beeler wrote. Because Mercola’s contract with YouTube was found to be enforceable and “YouTube had the discretion to take down content that harmed its users,” Beeler said that Mercola did not plausibly plead claims for breach of contract or unjust enrichment.
Mercola’s complaint was dismissed without leave to amend.
Thanks to ArchieBunker (Slashdot reader #96,909) for sharing the article.