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Advertisers are suspending ads on YouTube

due to extremism concerns

     
10:13 am on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Major advertisers on YouTube are suspending their Ads because of extremism concerns.

Advertisers are pulling their Ads because they are appearing next to "inappropriate" material on the video-sharing site.

A recent investigation by the Times found adverts were appearing alongside content from supporters of extremist groups, making them around £6 per 1,000 viewers, as well as making money for the company.

Ministers have summoned Google for talks at the Cabinet Office after imposing a temporary restriction on its own ads - including for military recruitment and blood donation campaigns - appearing on YouTube.


[bbc.co.uk...]

An investigation by The Times found ads for dozens of leading firms have been shown alongside videos posted by extremists including David Duke, former leader of the Klu Klux Klan.

Numerous other racists, holocaust deniers and rape apologists have received payouts from Google for YouTube commercials.

Taxpayer-funded ads for various branches of the British Government were appearing alongside Isis propaganda videos and other offensive content.


[independent.co.uk...]

Current companies that have pulled advertising from YouTube:

The Guardian
Channel 4
BBC
UK Government
HSBC
Lloyds
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS)
Marks and Spencer
McDonald’s
L’Oreal
Audi
French advertising group (Havas) that has clients including O2, EDF and Royal Mail
Dominos
Transport for London
Financial Conduct Authority

Sky, Barclays and Vodafone are understood to be considering whether to cancel their campaigns unless Google is able to resolve the problem rapidly.
12:27 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Update:

The boss of Google's European operation has apologised over ads that have appeared around extremist videos.

[twitter.com...]

Interpublic are also thinking about pulling Ads on YouTube

Michael Roth, the chief executive of Interpublic, one of the world’s biggest advertising groups, said on Monday that while his company had not yet frozen its spending with Google it had threatened to do so unless the technology group moved quickly to correct the problem.

“If they can’t fix it then we are not going to participate. They will suffer economically,” Mr Roth told the Financial Times.


[ft.com...]
3:37 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Extremists made £250,000 from ads for UK brands on Google, say experts


Wagdi Ghoneim, an Egyptian-Qatari Salafi Muslim preacher who has been banned from entering the UK due to concerns he is seeking to “provoke others to commit terrorist acts”, is estimated to have made $78,000 from adverts placed in anti-western propaganda videos.


Other online extremists making money from adverts placed against their YouTube videos include the US pastor Steven Anderson, who was banned from the UK last year after he said the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, was “good news” as “there’s 50 less paedophiles in the world”.

Anderson’s YouTube channel is estimated to have made $68,000 from 33.5m views of his videos, in which he says gay people “were not born that way, but they will burn that way”. Adverts that have appeared alongside Anderson’s videos include those for L’Oréal, Transport for London, Sainsbury’s, Nissan and the Guardian.


[theguardian.com...]

blimey Google what are you doing!
3:42 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Google's stock downgraded by analyst

The decision of large UK advertisers to pull their business from Google's ad platforms may hit the firm's growth, according to one analyst.

Brian Wieser, an analyst at research company Pivotal, downgraded his target share price for Google owner Alphabet from $970 to $950 following the advertiser boycott.
4:08 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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downgraded his target share price for Google owner Alphabet from $970 to $950

so about 2%.
or maybe 3-4x the "noise" of typical daily trading swings.
4:28 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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that's the target price, current stock is $867.08 down 0.6%
5:16 pm on Mar 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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so he's essentially saying "i now recommend selling GOOG when it goes up ~$80 dollars instead of waiting until it goes up ~$100", correct?
it doesn't seem like significant event to me.
5:38 am on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I think it shows the flaws Google's matching of ads with user generated content (and third part sites as well - Adsense targeting can be pretty inappropriate too). I works OK for "widgets in woking" type searches, but for anything that is not specifically a product search it becomes pretty hit and miss.

Even with product specific searches it does not always work - on site of my own with Adsense - ads for blue widgets appearing on an article saying that blue widgets are a waste of money and cannot possibly work as advertised.
6:56 am on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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We know advertisers don't want their ads next to content that doesn’t align with their values. So starting today, we’re taking a tougher stance on hateful, offensive and derogatory content. This includes removing ads more effectively from content that is attacking or harassing people based on their race, religion, gender or similar categories. This change will enable us to take action, where appropriate, on a larger set of ads and sites.


[blog.google...]
8:21 am on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The pot has been simmering for a number of years. This might be the first sign it's about to boil over.

If g can target the end user, they can certainly target the publisher, but have had no reason to do so until now.
9:47 am on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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How will google police this?

and if we see an Ad by McDonald’s on a extremist youtube video in the future should we assume that McDonald’s is happy for the Ad to be there?
10:09 am on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I suspect that most advertisers didn't and don't know all the precise places the ads were appearing. They would run an ad on Google's system and if they got clicks and roi they didn't look at the detail.
We'll be hiring significant numbers of people and developing new tools powered by our latest advancements in AI and machine learning to increase our capacity to review questionable content for advertising. In cases where advertisers find their ads were served where they shouldn’t have been, we plan to offer a new escalation path to make it easier for them to raise issues. In addition, we’ll soon be able to resolve these cases in less than a few hours.Expanded safeguards for advertisers [blog.google]

Google has not made it clear precisely how it'll deal with this, but they've said they'll up the workers and AI with their system.

This will bring a focus onto raising the bar, which should have been done a long time ago, imho.
1:42 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Extremists made £250,000 from ads for UK brands on Google, say experts

That is just 0.0015% of Google's ad revenue


When you run a billion dollar company mistakes will be made and these mistakes can be very embarrassing. Be careful not to fall for clickbait material. In case you didn't notice despite this clickbait Google stock actually went up
2:27 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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the point is that Google is giving money to extremists that should never happen, a billion dollar company should not be making those kind of mistakes ever.

Google's main business is advertising it should know who it's publishers and advertisers are no matter how big it is, that's not an excuse.

how is this click bait exactly?
3:12 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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It is a bit unrealistic to demand perfection in life.

Any company that has about 300 hours of video uploaded every minute of every day and relies on computer algorithms to manage the situation, is going to make mistakes. We are talking about 0.0015% of Google's ad revenue. Google already had policies trying to handle situations like this, they already apologized and they are pulling in more resources to deal with this.

Honestly there are much bigger Google mistakes to criticize.

PS I am more interested in the claim that $68,000 came from 33.5m views because that means each view generated $.002.
3:30 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I checked Google's stock for yesterday and the stock went down not up

[uk.finance.yahoo.com...]

20 Mar 2017

Open - 850.01
Close - 848.40

Google's stock today is down 1% - 840.55

that's an $10 drop in two days.

anyway the $970 to $950 was about the target price, not daily stock changes.


the £250,000 is a small amount in the big picture, but it was just a few examples! Youtube has thousands (millions?) of hateful videos that are showing advertising and many of them are still up there.

[bbc.co.uk...]

there maybe other things to criticize but this is what's in the news at the moment and this is a forum to discuss these things?

The guardian used this youtube calculator here from marketinghub:

[influencermarketinghub.com...]

input sanderson1611 (Steven Anderson's youtube username) and it estimates he made $68,000 from advertising.
4:16 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I am not sure if you are familiar with stock investing. Stocks are constantly moving. Google stock and the use of bold font in this thread was higher at the time of my writing :) but let's get back to the real topic of this thread.

Some extremists found a opportunity to exploit Google and their advertisers to make money. It was embarrassing for Google and their advertisers. Google apologized and already said they will be utilizing more resources to resolve the situation.

It is still a bit unrealistic to demand perfection in life but that is just my opinion.
4:30 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Further to Goodroi's point about stock investing. Given the volatility of Google's share price over the past few weeks, the amount by which target price was revised is essentially insignificant. My guess is that the brokerage revised the target downwards hoping that journalist would quote their brokerages negative sentiment in support of the news story, thus providing the brokerage with free publicity.

The share prices is trading close to its 52-week high, and it has seen a bigger drop today when there is no news than yesterday.

This is nothing more than a bit of bad press for Google, but it will have no noticeable impact on their earning s or share price.
4:41 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I'm not a stock analyst so the stock price remains to be seen, and for company that makes $4.9 billion a year, damn right I have high expectations but that's just me ;)

Apparently Google knew about this in 2013 but did nothing

[theregister.co.uk...]

Did you know that Lexus marketing money has wound up in the hands of a bestiality video website? I certainly didn't either, and it's a sure bet that Toyota Motor Company, which owns the Lexus brand, didn't mean that to happen. But it's just one striking example of how multinational companies help fund the web's darker side.


It shows Google were happy to be taking money from advertisers and paying it to extremists for their own profit.

It's only because it's become news that Google are doing something about it, if the Times hadn't run an article on it, Google would have let it continue.
6:22 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't think you took the time to read that article. It does not prove what you imply.

The article includes positive quotes like "The IAB has been great," said Geoff Taylor of the BPI, "and Google is helping". The article also says "For his part, Google's Theo Bertram welcomed initiatives to "drain the swamp of dodgy networks, dodgy agencies and dodgy sites"

If you want to attack Google, there are many better topics. Complaining about minor issues (yes, something that impacts 0.0015% of ad revenue is relatively minor) that are already being addressed is a bad use of time so I am going to be turning my attention to more productive items. If you want to vent frustration and keep attacking Google, I suggest you pick one of the many other Google failings that are available to criticize.

To recap, extremism is bad, Google is imperfect, and to demand perfection is unrealistic imho.
6:43 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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What, exactly, is the position here? “I don’t want my product to be used by people who disagree with me”? “I don’t want my product to be used by people I consider loathsome”? Do they have to pass some kind of test before you accept their money (which, after all, is the purpose of advertising)?

The only opinion I really care about is the one that goes “I don’t see why soandso should have the exclusive right to profit from suchandsuch copyrighted content, so I’m going to steal it, plaster ads all over it and make money all the same”. Deal with that, and then* you can deal with the other stuff.


* I’m not clear on whether it is an absolute rule of this thread that some text must be in boldface, but I’m not taking any chances.
9:34 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The solution (one of many) would be for the ad server company to vet the publisher BEFORE any advertiser's money is involved. The advertiser knows where they want their ads to NOT appear as well as where they would LIKE it to appear. As it is now the vetting is AFTER the fact (and misplaced ad revenues) and monies have been exchanged.
9:34 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@goodroi it shows that Google was possibly aware of the issues in 2013, this is a forum to discuss these issues, we've already discussed above that 0.0015% was for a few videos alone, there are thousands (possibly millions?) of other extremist videos on youtube. but anyway, you keep mentioning 0.0015% for some reason. If there are other things to criticize Google about I assume there are other threads on here for that, but this is a thread about Google, Youtube, Ads, extremism, Google's profit, Google's payment to extremists, Advertisers boycotting Google and did Google know about it or could they have done more oh and if there's any impact on Google's stock price - down 2.11% today.
9:49 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@nonstop look at this graph:
[google.com...]
It shows that Google's drop is pretty much in-line with the market (nasdaq). So it is impossible to attribute this largely trivial news story (that came out yesterday) to today's price drop.
10:06 pm on Mar 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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things are getting worse for Google, they may have broken Anti Terrorism laws in the UK if they have been reckless by allowing terrorist supporters on YouTube

Mr Buckland then drew attention to a provision in the Terrorism Act 2006, which “creates an offence of the dissemination of terrorist material either intentionally – I wouldn’t say the social media platforms are doing it intentionally – but there is an offence of recklessly disseminating this material, and I think the criminal law is there as a clear boundary beyond which people should not stray”.

Later in the hearing, Ms Cooper asked the Government to clarify whether Google was breaking the law.

Mr Buckland replied: “I think I would have to be careful because one would need to look at the evidence in a particular instance.

“But I made my point, I think the law is there, it’s a clear boundary and, frankly, if this behaviour meets the criteria for recklessness, then it potentially could lead to an investigation.


[thecourier.co.uk...]

Executive Peter Barron admitted last week that Google does not employ a single person to root out hate speech on YouTube.

Will Google pay back the money to advertisers?
2:09 pm on Mar 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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It is still a bit unrealistic to demand perfection in life but that is just my opinion. 


You know that and we know that. However, that is not the legislator's problem. If they say it has to stop, it has to stop. There will be a way, whether it is to Google's taste is another matter.
2:13 pm on Mar 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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So it is impossible to attribute this largely trivial news story (that came out yesterday) to today's price drop.


It's a 'largely trivial' news story that could lead to serious criminal charges and ultimately an entirely changed modus operandi for Youtube.
2:54 pm on Mar 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The most amazing thing to me is that they don't employ a single person to look through all the dubious videos. That is taking penny pinching to the extreme.

But I suppose if they employ someone to do it then they will be accepting responsibility for it, which they don't want to do.
9:22 am on Mar 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Google's model, and it's worked beautifully for them up to this point and will continue to barring a few speed bumps like this one, is to throw all the mud in the world at the wall and see what they're allowed to get away with. Remember viacom? Remember authors vs. Google Books?

They don't care what gets put on YT as long as it's not p.o.r.n or beheadings (funny how they seem to be able to filter uploaded p.o.r.n super fast). If they get some grief on the other side, like this, they'll look into it, hand-edit a few things and wait for the headlines to pass. The $$$ will always keep rolling in.

Biggest shock of this whole story? 6 quid per 1000 impressions? Someone's pulling that guy's chain.
9:34 am on Mar 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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AT&T, Verizon, Enterprise and the US operations of GlaxoSmithKline have pulled millions of dollars of advertising.

While Google switched off advertising around extremist videos in Europe, it appears not to have done so in the US, said BBC North America Technology Correspondent, Dave Lee.

"There's a lot of frustration that many of the measures Google perhaps took in Europe, where the PR controversy was stepping up, didn't seem to apply to those same videos in other markets," he told Wake up to Money.


Google is still showing adverts on extremist videos in the USA it looks like Google is still happy to fund / profit from extremism in the USA.

over 250 companies have now boycotted advertising on Google's YouTube.
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