Palestinians Face Challenges Due to Restricted Access to Global Platforms such as YouTube, Amazon, and PayPal


Palestinians encounter challenges accessing worldwide technology platforms such as YouTube, Amazon, and PayPal, limiting their capacity to generate income through these platforms

Palestinians are facing challenges in accessing major global tech platforms such as YouTube, Amazon, and PayPal, which hinders their ability to generate income through these channels. While YouTube is available to Palestinians, they are excluded from the platform’s revenue-sharing program, preventing them from earning money for their content. Attempts to access the program result in an error message stating, ‘The YouTube Partner Program is not available in your current location, Palestine.’ Despite contributing substantial content, Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank encounter difficulties accessing various online benefits enjoyed by others globally.

Google, the parent company of YouTube, cited the availability of the YouTube Partner Program in Palestinian territories as dependent on the introduction of a localized version of YouTube. This involves adapting features and options to align with the language and culture of the region, leading to unequal access to online income sources for Palestinians.

PayPal, a platform operating in over 200 countries, including those with unstable political conditions, conflicts, and human rights issues, exhibits reluctance to extend its services to Palestinians with bank accounts in the West Bank and Gaza. The reasons behind this reluctance remain undisclosed. Providing such services could directly contribute to economic development and equality in Palestine, according to a recent research report by 7amleh.

Another report by 7amleh highlights restrictions on e-commerce platforms like Amazon for Palestinians. It emphasizes that the ability of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza to access economic markets is significantly constrained by the Israeli occupation, both in physical and online realms. The report asserts that tech companies offering essential financial services for e-commerce play a role in denying Palestinians their human rights.

Simultaneously, the Gaza region has experienced multiple internet outages in recent months due to various reasons such as Gaza’s power plant running out of fuel, Israel cutting off electricity and water, and direct attacks on civilian telecommunications infrastructure. Data from IODA and Netblocks indicates that since October 11, 2023, Gaza’s connectivity levels have been less than 30% of pre-conflict levels, with an over 80% reduction in internet traffic across Gaza in October 2023.

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