[BBC Reporter Note: YouTube removes the promotional videos from their platform that endorsed the unethical practice of academic cheating. EduBirdie, an essay writing company in Ukraine, was exposed by BBC for paying popular YouTube stars to promote their services.]
Several months have passed since BBC came up with the news, exposing EduBirdie for paying popular YouTube stars to promote their services. The BBC investigation revealed that there were more than 250 different YouTube channels that were endorsing the services of EduBirdie either through adverts or verbal announcements. YouTube has finally removed all those videos that endorsed the services of this Ukrainian essay writing company.
Several YouTube stars, including a 12-year-old, were found to be involved in this scam. In fact, the BBC investigation revealed that these YouTubers received top dollars from EduBirdie for promoting the brand. More than 1,400 YouTube videos were found with EduBirdie adverts on them. In light of these incidents, a regulator has asked Facebook and Google (the mother company of YouTube) to stop making money from adverts for companies like EduBirdie.
Essay writing companies are not illegal. However, if students are found to be presenting an assignment that was prepared by someone else, then they get penalized for the action. This makes the services of essay writing companies like EduBirdie unethical. This is the reason why EduBirdie was thrashed by the educationists across the globe when they tried to reach a larger audience by endorsing the services on YouTube.
Ethically, essay writing companies can provide the students with a solution for a requested problem, just the way a tutor does. But the solution must only be used for reference. The student needs to do his/her homework with honesty. Things didn't go well for EduBirdie or the YouTubers as they asked the students to place an order and get their assignments done in less than five hours.
After the initial BBC investigation, EduBirdie used evasive tactics to avoid detection, but they kept on endorsing their services on YouTube. Michaela Mendez, a Canadian YouTuber wore EduBirdie branded t-shirt while unboxing an award from YouTube in one of her videos. Another YouTuber, 18-year-old Nick Turgeon from the UK, was paid by EduBirdie to create two slime videos that appeal to young children.
Such promotional videos of the YouTubers, including the two mentioned above, are now removed by the platform. Interestingly, the essay writing company EduBirdie scam is a result of a huge miscommunication. The company told BBC that they never asked the YouTubers to say what they have said on their videos. EduBirdie has also tried to justify themselves saying that they provide essays which serve as a reference guide and nothing more.
The regulator, which is responsible for upholding the reputation and standard the academic degrees across the UK, has taken this matter seriously and has written to YouTube, asking it to stop promoting the services that help students to cheat. YouTube told BBC that it would work towards helping the creators on its platform to understand that they "must not promote dishonest activity".
The EduBirdie reviews that are posted on the internet by the students suggest that EduBirdie is not exactly great when it comes to delivering essay writing support to the students. It will not be wrong to say that by endorsing their mediocre services on the internet, they have dug their own grave.
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