25 August 2019

Shooting suspect upset by income loss at YouTube

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The female suspect in the shooting of three people at YouTube's California headquarters was angry about the company's policy and practices, according to police. reports citing AFP.

Authorities identified her as San Diego resident Nasim Najafi Aghdam, 39, a prolific YouTube user who was a vegan and animal rights activist and posted videos on animal cruelty, veganism and fitness.
Aghdam's family said she hated the video-sharing site because she believed it was filtering and censoring her videos in Farsi, Turkish and in English because of "multiple or severe violations" of its policy and had cut off her income through demonetization of her video content.

YouTube normally pays content creators for their videos and through demonetization it decides which videos can collect ad revenue based on whether they are deemed advertiser-friendly.

Aghdam’s father said he had warned police she might go to YouTube's headquarters and target it prior to the shooting, according to local media.

"There is no equal growth opportunity on YOUTUBE or any other video sharing site, your channel will grow if they want to!!!!!," Aghdam said on her personal website, adding that her videos did not contain inappropriate material. "YouTube filtered my channels to keep them from getting views!"

Accusing "close-minded" YouTube employees for putting an age restriction on her videos, she said in another post that it was aimed at reducing views and discouraging her from making new videos.

Authorities described the attack as "a domestic dispute" and said terrorism did not appear to be motive.

Aghdam was found with a self-inflicted gunshot wound at the company’s headquarters and pronounced dead at the scene.

Two female victims and one male are being treated for gunshot injuries at the hospital, according the authorities. The 36-year-old male victim is in critical condition while one woman is in serious condition and the other is in fair condition.

A fourth victim was transferred to a hospital after she injured her ankle trying to flee the scene, according to San Bruno Police Chief Ed Barberini.

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki tried to offer words of comfort after the shooting. "There are no words to describe how horrible it was to have an active shooter @YouTube today,” she said. "Our deepest gratitude to law enforcement & first responders for their rapid response. Our hearts go out to all those injured & impacted today. We will come together to heal as a family.”

And the head of YouTube’s parent-company offered his condolences to the victims and said Google is doing everything it can to support the injured and their families.

"I know a lot of you are in shock right now," Sundar Pichai said in an email to the company. "Over the coming days, we will continue to provide support to help everyone in our Google family heal from this unimaginable tragedy.”

2018.04.04 / 23:28
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