Fact Checks about ABS-CBN

FALSE: YouTube deleted ABS-CBN’s channels for abusing terms of service on ads

FALSE: YouTube deleted ABS-CBN’s channels for abusing terms of service on ads
YouTube’s official statement only says the affected channels were hacked, not that they were terminated due to abuse of terms of service
FALSE: YouTube deleted ABS-CBN’s channels for abusing terms of service on ads
At a glance:
  • Claim: YouTube said ABS-CBN’s YouTube channels were terminated due to violations of its terms of service about placing third-party advertisements.
  • Rating: FALSE
  • The facts: YouTube’s official statement only said the affected channels were hacked, not that they were terminated due to abuse of terms of service.
  • Why we fact checked this: Facebook flagged at least 4 videos containing this claim for fact checking. The videos had over 477,000 views combined as of writing.
Complete details:

Videos circulated on November 3 that claimed ABS-CBN’s supposed violations of YouTube rules on third-party advertisements were the reason why its accounts on the platform became inaccessible for several hours that day.

YouTube channel “Pinoy Streamline” said, “Kitang-kita naman na ang YouTube na mismo ang nagsabi na ang channel na ito ay tinerminate nga nila dahil sa bayolasyon sa kanilang YouTube terms of service.” (It’s very clear – YouTube itself said that these channels were terminated because of their violations of the YouTube terms of service.)

YouTube channel “PINOY SUPERSTARS TV” made similar claims in a separate video titled, “YOUTUBE NAGSALITA NA SA PAG TERMINATE/BURA NILA SA ABS CBN NEWS CHANNEL! (YouTube finally revealed why they terminated/deleted ABS-CBN News Channel!)”

These claims are false. YouTube’s official statement only said the affected channels were hacked, not that they were terminated due to abuse of terms of service. YouTube also restored ABS-CBN’s accounts the same day it became inaccessible. 

In a statement on November 3, YouTube confirmed that the accounts ABS-CBN News and ABS-CBN News Channel were hacked on November 2 and that they were working with the ABS-CBN team to help retrieve them.

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Hackers attack ABS-CBN News’ YouTube channels

Hackers attack ABS-CBN News’ YouTube channels

“We take account security very seriously and notify account owners when we detect suspicious activity. If an owner has reason to believe their account was compromised, they can notify our team to secure the account and regain control,” YouTube said. The company further urged users to enable two-factor authentication to minimize the risk of hacking.

The YouTube accounts ABS-CBN News and ABS-CBN News Channel were inaccessible early morning on November 3. At the time, ABS-CBN said it detected a “technical problem” and was looking into the matter. Both accounts were then restored at 3:58 pm.

The videos uploaded by channels “Pinoy Streamline” and “PINOY SUPERSTARS TV” were reuploaded on Facebook by pages “Philippine Political History” and “Top News Online.” These were then flagged for fact checkers to verify using Claim Check, Facebook’s monitoring tool that identifies suspicious posts on the platform. The YouTube videos had 129,862 combined views as of writing, while the Facebook videos had over 348,000 views combined.

ABS-CBN was forced to go off-air in May. In July, lawmakers rejected the network’s bid for a fresh franchise. The company has then shifted its focus on its digital and cable businesses. (READ: FAST FACTS: Other businesses of ABS-CBN) – Pauline Macaraeg/Rappler.com

Keep us aware of suspicious Facebook pages, groups, accounts, websites, articles, or photos in your network by contacting us at factcheck@rappler.com. Let us battle disinformation one Fact Check at a time.