Published: Sat, March 18, 2017
Industry | By Faith Ward

United Kingdom government suspends ads amid extremism concerns — YouTube

United Kingdom government suspends ads amid extremism concerns — YouTube

Some advertising customers in the United Kingdom have pulled ads from Google-owned YouTube after some of them reportedly appeared alongside inappropriate and extremist content. MPs meanwhile threatened that legislation could be put on the table if social media companies did not effectively self-regulate.

In Friday's letter, Ms Cooper also wrote: "Google is the second richest company on the planet".

"We have placed a temporary restriction on our YouTube advertising pending reassurances from Google that Government messages can be delivered in a safe and appropriate way". "As a result Google and these organisations are still profiting from hatred". This comes after the United Kingdom government made a decision to move away from TV advertising and focus more funding on digital advertising on outlets like YouTube, with the Cabinet Office saying these outlets are a "cost-effective" way of reaching mass audiences.

The government has suspended ads from YouTube amid concerns the content is appearing against "inappropriate" material.

Some companies, however, said they were taking steps to protect their brands.

Global marketing giant Havas said it has pulled its United Kingdom ad spend with Google on Friday over brand safety concerns for its clients.

Havas, one of the world's largest marketing groups, spends about £175 million on digital advertising in the United Kingdom annually.

Google and YouTube will revamp their ad policies.

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WPP is the world's single largest ad holdings group and it will be interesting to see if it follows Havas in any way.

Google and Facebook own huge chunks of the digital advertising business, and major brands are spending an increasing share of their ad budgets on their platforms. Ronan Harris, managing director of Google UK, said the company would be making changes in the coming weeks to give brands more control over where their adverts appeared.

PARIS, March 17 French advertising group Havas said on Friday that it would not pull advertising from Alphabet Inc's Google platforms on a global basis, after its British business suspended activity with the USA company over concerns about its YouTube website.

He said Google had "heard from our advertisers loud and clear that we can provide simpler, more robust ways to stop their ads from showing against controversial content".

The UK government, along with a handful of businesses, including the Guardian newspaper and L'Oréal, have frozen their Google advertising accounts after their ads appeared alongside websites run by hate preachers, anti-Semites and white nationalists.

Pensel said the Guardian would not resume its ad buying until Google can guarantee such placement will not continue.

This latest issue comes around increasing media reports that advertisers are unwittingly funding online terror groups and hate preachers. The Guardian withdrew all advertising from Google and YouTube after one of its promotions was placed next to videos of American white nationalists, a hate preacher banned from the United Kingdom, and a controversial Islamist extremist preacher.

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