Verizon, AT&T pull Google ads

Source The Times

Source The Times

YouTube will also be looking into altering their guidelines for what types of content can be uploaded which should help to prevent ads from showing up on hate-filled videos, as there would likely be less of these types of videos on the platform.

As for why Havas hasn't already suspended advertising on Google properties in other countries, Mr. Bolloré said, "we had proof that it happened in the United Kingdom and I haven't received any proof that it happened in other markets".

As a recap, The Times broke the story last week that a number of British advertisers' ads had appeared next to extremist material - including white supremacists, homophobes and Islamic extremists - on the Google-owned YouTube which also generated revenues for the hate-speech creators.

AT&T, Verizon and several other major advertisers are suspending their marketing campaigns on Google's YouTube site after discovering their brands have been appearing alongside videos promoting terrorism and other unsavory subjects.

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Verizon, the fifth-largest USA advertiser, Enterprise, the world's biggest auto rental business, and pharmaceutical company GSK have also followed suit, The Times reported. This has been in response to an overwhelming wave of criticism Google's automatic, programmatic advertising is unable to control the placement of ads from mainstream brands next to offensive material. British advertisers that have said they are pulling ads from YouTube include McDonald's, the BBC, L'Oréal, Marks & Spencer, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds, the Guardian, Audi, Channel 4 and Havas' British unit.

AT&T's decision to pull advertising from YouTube was reported earlier by the Wall Street Journal. YouTube already has a policy in place for videos that recommend or support extremism and will attempt to remove ads from these videos in as little as a few hours after being alerted to the video, so it's possible that they'll be looking to do the same with other negative videos where advertisements for big brands are present.

Agency executives and advertisers have been in talks with Google to press for more details on the new tools it will provide. "We hold all publishers, including Google and YouTube, accountable to ensure that the highest standards of advertising are consistently met".

For additional context, see our past coverage: Google isn't actually tackling "fake news" content on its ad network and Brand safety: Avoiding fake & hyperpartisan news on the Google Display Network. "Brand safety is an ongoing commitment for us, and we'll continue to listen to your feedback".