Google-owned YouTube is in trouble. A number of high-profile brands pulled their advertising from the site over the last week or so. There have been complaints that these adverts are being shown alongside extremist content – whether that be terror related, homophobic, anti-semitic or white supremacists.
Brands such as The Guardian, M&S, BBC, AT&T, Verizon, and Johnson & Johnson have all pulled, or temporarily halted their ads for the time being. Obviously, no brand with any sense wants their image associated with such undesirable content.
The problem is the automatic placing of the adverts – there’s little ‘human’ control over where the adverts get placed. The software that determines the placement of ads isn’t smart enough to realise the type of content. Understandably, advertisers have had enough.
Google and YouTube need big advertisers, as do the many users who create money making content. They can’t afford to be so complacent in the future.