Google is in a bit of hot water after customers complained about the placement of their ads. It wasn’t that the ads were too small or were being skipped over by users, but that major brands and even the U.K. government are frustrated their ads are being placed alongside YouTube videos of extremist groups and hate speech practitioners.
The company is one of the biggest sites in the world with numerous companies using it as a platform to push their brands. But because it is so big, some ads can turn up in some undesirable places and now Google is trying to fix that. CNN noted that some companies (L’Oreal, Sainsbury’s and Honda) and even the British Government had their ads used in videos from former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, religious extremists, and hate preachers.
L’Oreal was “horrified” by the event, The Guardian pulled ads completely from Google and the British government called the company to answer for why tax-payer funded ads are turning up next to the controversial content. Google has apologized, noting it has guidelines to avoid these situations and is working to fix the situation, but noted some things slip through the cracks:
“We accept that we don’t always get it right and that sometimes, ads appear where they should not. We’re committed to doing better, and will make changes to our policies and brand controls for advertisers.”
CNN wrote Google may have made a slip up when categorizing it’s YouTube library, which led to major brands being advertised on fringe video content.