Houston rapper Willie D's social commentary YouTube channel taken down, then reinstated by YouTu



Google has reinstated the YouTube channel of Houston rapper William James Dennis—better known as Willie D and a founding member of the Geto Boys—after it was possibly taken down by mistake.

The channel Willie D Live, which features a mix of social commentary, court footage, and videos of police, was taken down by YouTube on July 26. Dennis said at a news conference Monday that he believes it was his July 2 video titled "Maxine Waters responds to death threats: 'If you shoot at me, you better shoot straight'" which resulted in YouTube taking down his account.

The video, which has more than 38,000 views, features Dennis discussing Rep. Maxine Waters, a California Democrat, who cancelled speaking events because of threats made against her after calling for President Donald Trump's impeachment.

"If you shoot me, you better shoot straight," Water said at a rally in Los Angeles in late June. "There's nothing like a wounded animal."

Google declined to comment on the specific reason Dennis' YouTube channel was taken down, but emailed a statement to the Houston Chronicle explaining that because there is more than 400 hours of video uploaded every minute to YouTube, the company relies on community and machine learning technology to flag content that may violate its community guidelines for human review.

Dennis' YouTube account was reinstated about 1 p.m. Tuesday, roughly two hours following the Houston Chronicle's Google inquiry.

"With the volume of videos on our platform, sometimes we make mistakes and when this is brought to our attention we reinstate the videos or channels," the company's statement continued. "We also give uploaders the ability to appeal these decisions and we will re-review the content."

As of Wednesday morning, Dennis' YouTube channel has netted more than 71 million views from the more than 1,5oo videos he's posted since Sept. 19, 2011.


Courtesy of Houston Chronicle

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