Screen Time


When the pandemic hit in 2020, it suddenly seemed like conspiracy theories were everywhere.

Did Bill Gates put a microchip in the vaccine? Is the World Economic Forum trying to take over the world? Was the pandemic orchestrated by a secret cabal of elites?

A recent poll found that 1 in 4 Canadians believe in online conspiracy theories. Which means that we’re no longer just living in different information bubbles. We’re living in different realities.

On this season of Screen Time, Taylor Owen and Supriya Dwivedi dive into the murky world of online conspiracy theories and misinformation. They’ll expose the bad actors trying to distort the truth for personal gain, and speak to the Canadians occupying these alternate realities to try and understand how they got there – and how we might bring them back.


Taylor Owen is the Director of the Centre for Media, Technology and Democracy at McGill University, and is one of the country’s foremost experts on mis and disinformation.

Supriya Dwivedi spent years trying to fact check misinformation as a talk radio host. She’s now a political commentator, and the Director of Policy and Engagement for the Centre for Media, Technology and Democracy at McGill University.

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S1 E4: Kids and YouTube: Who's watching who?
S1 E4: Kids and YouTube: Who's watching who?
YouTube is an ever-expanding video library that's home to a huge range of content-most of which is intended for adults. The difficult task of curating children's experiences on the platform often falls to parents. Co-hosts Taylor Owen and Nicole Edwards explore the reasons YouTube Kids isn't a quick fix for this problem, and how YouTube's profit model and design affects its youngest users - from rabbit holes to radicalization.Guest Becca Lewis, a researcher who studies influence-building and micro-celebrities on social media platforms, details the cycle that can inch kids and creators towards increasingly controversial content on YouTube.Guest Josh Golin, executive director of Fairplay, an organization working to end advertising to kids, recalls bringing a landmark case against Google, which owns YouTube. He explains how a loophole allowed YouTube to operate as though no kids under 13 were using the platform. He also shares what else can be done to inform parents and kids about how YouTube uses their data.Co-hosts Taylor and Nicole round out the episode with some actionable tips for families to get started with safer YouTube use. FIND OUT MORE: For more information on how Youtube handles kids’ data and safety, read their guide, How does YouTube help keep children protected on the platform? For help setting parental controls and other safety features on Youtube, visit Common Sense Media’s guide, Parents' Ultimate Guide to YouTube Kids. Donate to TVO: for privacy information.