According to BBC News reports, British police claim that a surge of stabbings in London are linked to UK drill videos.
Police say that they’d asked YoUTube to take down 50 to 60 videos over the last two years.
So far YouTube has reportedly removed 30 videos from its site as part of the Met police’s “Operation Domain” strategy.
The strategy targets violent online content that the police have linked to knife and gang-related crimes.
The music videos that are deemed to be violent are all “drill” songs. The genre is a form of trap music that started in Chicago and made its way to the U.K. Being extremely popular on social media platforms, especially YouTube.
The music is characterised by violent imagery and the phrase “to drill” is slang for “to shoot somebody,”
In a statement obtained by the Guardian, a spokesperson from YouTube commented.
“We have developed policies specifically to help tackle videos related to knife crime in the UK and are continuing to work constructively with experts on this issue,” the spokesperson said. “We have a dedicated process for the police to flag videos directly to our teams because we often need specialist context from law enforcement to identify real-life threats. Along with others in the UK, we share the deep concern about this issue and do not want our platform used to incite violence.”
According to reports from The Independent, police have collected around 1400 videos from YouTube with the intention to gather intelligence.
“anyone identified in the slick videos can be targeted with action including criminal behaviour orders that can prevent them from associating with certain people, entering designated areas, wearing hoods or using social media and unregistered mobile phones.”
In response to this, a drill group called “1011” have launched an online petition to stop YouTube removing their videos. The group have gathered over 5000 signatures so far.
Also an organisation called Press Play OK, promotes drill content over social media made a following statement on Instagram.
Police had “forced” YouTube to take down some its videos. Adeel Amini, an editor from Press Play appeared on the BBC Tuesday morning, saying that YouTube’s decision to comply with police demands sets a “dangerous precedent.”
Are young people being radicalised by “drill” videos?
Will removing the videos help to solve the deeper issues amongst youth violence?