World Animal Protection, an international animal welfare non-profit, has initiated a fresh inquiry into the proliferation of staged animal ‘res.cue’ films on YouTube. YouTube has risen at an exponential rate since 2005.
According to National Geographic, 500 hours of footage are submitted to the network every minute. The enormous volume of information necessitates the use of 10,000 humans and machine learning to monitor the site.
World Animal Protection groups are calling with YouTube to closely monitor bogus animal res.cue videos. According to News Wire, these movies typically depict harmless prey, such as a chicken or a cat, being at.tac.ked by a bigger predator, such as a snake or crocodile.
“Just when you think you’ve heard everything, people come up with another method to be ter.ri.ble to animals.” According to News Wire, animal advocate, comedian, and actor Ricky Gervais stated, “Social media giants like YouTube should be on the front foot when it comes to blocking this awful stuff from their platforms.”
Human intervention is used to settle the fa.ked as.sau.lts, portraying them as the human res.cuer and slandering the reputations of predator species. According to National Geographic, the recordings can cause stress, ha.rm, or even .d.e.a.t.h to the animals involved.
“Generally, if you are a wildlife photographer or filmmaker, it takes numerous hours, days, months, or even years to ethically obtain material that can convey the tale of a species in the field,” DJ Schuber, a wildlife scientist at the Animal Welfare Institute, told National Geographic.
YouTube said in March that it will take measures to prohibit fa.ked animal res.cue videos. According to a report by Lady Freethinker, an animal protection charity, more than a hundred new films have been submitted since the announcement, while hundreds more remain on the platform.
According to Lady Freethinker’s analysis, there were 180 phony animal res.cue films produced between October 2018 and May 2021. According to News Wire, 70 of the 180 videos were published in 2021, indicating an increasing trend in unpleasant entertainment.
The top 50 most-watched false animal res.cue videos had 133 million views. According to News Wire, ad money is earned for each view, making the profit directly related to the viewer. The inquiry drew attention to conservation issues as well. The predators shown in the films, including the Siamese crocodile and the Lar gibbon, are endangered.
“There is no question that the animals in these recordings will have suffered from .i.n.j.u.ries and s.i.gnificant psychological distress, all for cheap pleasures for spectators at home,” World Animal Protection program director Ben Williamson said. “If immediate action is not taken, we might see a flood of copycat content emerge, putting more animals and humans in dan.ger.”