After receiving many complaints, YouTube has shut down popular channel "Toy Freaks," which featured videos of a single dad and his two daughters in what many call extremely “abusive” and “disturbing” scenarios.
Greg Chism’s YouTube page routinely featured videos of his two school-aged girls in strange positions. Some videos showed the girls bathing, being scared to tears, spitting up food on each other, being dressed as babies and peeing on themselves, reported BuzzFeed News.
Last week, YouTube issued a new policy to more proactively restrict content which was included in the YouTube Kids app, yet was unsuitable for children.
Although "Toy Freaks" was recently ranked the 68th most-viewed channel on YouTube, the channel featured Chism’s two girls “in gross-out situations, as well as activities which many, many viewers feel border on abuse and exploitation, if not cross the line entirely, including videos of the children vomiting and in pain,” according to James Bridle, who wrote about the kid-targeted content on YouTube on his blog.
The discussion of "Toy Freaks" inspired a the circulation of a petition, which called for the immediate removal of the page.
Additionally, YouTuber Philip DeFranco published a recent video wherein he discussed the rise of inappropriate children videos on the site.
“There’s a huge subsection of videos that are very troubling,” he said. “What we often see is that they use children’s characters in the videos, they have children’s titles and tags that are specifically designed to take advantage of the YouTube algorithm… You’ll notice a lot of the titles, the descriptions, the tags, it’s kind of like this ‘word soup.’ Once again that’s people taking advantage of the algorithm by using highly-searched terms in the description. There’s a full disgusting rainbow of obscene and really inappropriate videos.”
“We’ve terminated the Toy Freaks channel for violation of our policies,” a YouTube rep said in a statement. “We will be conducting a broader review of associated content in conjunction with expert trusted flaggers.”
In a statement provided to Variety, Chism said YouTube informed him “of concerns that my videos were attracting audience members who do not have childrens’ best interests in their hearts.”
“Many YouTube community members expressed similar concerns, and their willingness to reach out to protect my children and all children from exploitation reinforces my faith in the YouTube community. Victoria, Annabelle and I want to thank our supporters as my girls have had the opportunity to develop their creativity and self-confidence over the past few years. Their future is bright. While it is disturbing to me that anyone would find inappropriate pleasure in our video skits, I deeply appreciate YouTube’s concerns for my family and I could not be happier with having had this remarkable experience,” he added.
(Photo: via Youtube)