Google is facing criticism and is under fire due to its advertising policies in the UK. Recently some advertising customers in the UK boycotted Google-owned YouTube since their ads were placed alongside inappropriate and also extremist content. They pulled their ads until proper action will be taken. Many notable brands took this, brands such as the Guardian Newspaper and the British government.
One of the instances that were reported was that the British government ad was played with videos of David Duke, former leader of Ku Klux Klan. Google faced an instant backlash after such ads and responded, vowing to rethink its policies.
The tech giant promised to begin a “thorough review” of its advertising policies by giving more control to its clients. The company said that soon the clients will be allowed to control the placement of their ads and choose where they want them to appear on not only YouTube but throughout the Google’s ad network.
After the backlash the managing director of Google UK, Ronan Harris gave a statement defending the company. He said,
With millions of sites in our network and 400 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, we recognize that we don’t always get it right, in a very small percentage of cases, ads appear against content that violates our monetization policies. We promptly remove the ads in those instances, but we know we can and must do more.
Despite this statement, their client, The Guardian called Google ad placements “unacceptable”. They urged,
There is an urgent need for the industry to come together to develop a meaningful system of self-regulation.
Due to the rise of Social Media and its dependency, social networks have come under a great amount of scrutiny. Their policies directly affect their clients and at a much larger scale.