According to a spokesperson for the platform, the accounts for R. Kelly TV and R. Kelly Vevo were terminated "in accordance with [YouTube's] creator responsibility guidelines." Per the site's policy, channel owners that are convicted of heinous crimes can be barred if the content is closely related to said crime. Given that Kelly used his fame and power to establish his racketeering enterprise YouTube determined him to be liable.
However, R. Kelly songs and albums that are posted by other creators or are hosted on the platform's own music streaming service won't be taken down since they technically don't violate the creator responsibility guidelines but anyone caught re-uploading the deleted content may be terminated as well.
"Egregious actions committed by R. Kelly warrant penalties beyond standard enforcement measures due to a potential to cause widespread harm," YouTube's head of legal, Nicole Alston, said in a memo to Bloomberg. "Ultimately we are taking this action to protect our users similar to other platforms."
R. Kelly was convicted on nine counts of sex trafficking, racketeering and sexual exploitation of a child last week by a federal jury. The guilty verdict has been the latest development in a long line of allegations of sexual abuse from numerous victims across three decades. Kelly is set to be sentenced May 4 and also faces similar cases in Illinois and Minnesota as well.
Photo via Getty/ Scott Olson
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