Advertisers pull off Google's YouTube for failing to provide adequate child protection

Audrey Hill
November 25, 2017

Cadbury chocolates maker Mondelez, Lidl, Mars and other consumer goods marketers have pulled advertising from YouTube after The Times newspaper found the video sharing-site was showing clips of scantily clad children alongside the ads of major brands. "Until we have confidence that appropriate safeguards are in place, we will not advertise on YouTube and Google".

The development comes just two days after YouTube announced a campaign to prevent inappropriate content and comments on its kids programming.

Another investigation by the New York Times that several channels uploaded content of what appeared to on the surface be child-friendly material, but turned out to be violent, psychologically harmful material.

In a blog post, YouTube's Vice President of Product Management Johanna Wright claimed they've always taken a hard stance against child abuse on the website but they're now removing content that features any sort of child endangerment-regardless of the uploader's intent.

YouTube has become one of Google's fastest-growing operations in terms of sales by simplifying the process of distributing video online but putting in place few limits on content.

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Despite that, it hasn't been enough to convince advertisers and concerned watchers. "We are actively working with Google and agency partners on an ongoing basis to ensure brand safety, but recognise there is more to be done by all parties".

Though YouTube created their Kids app to provide children a safe outlet to watch engaging, entertaining videos, multiple reports uncovered that the platform was inundated with explicit content. "There shouldn't be any ads running on this content and we are working urgently to fix this". When people started voicing the issues, the concern about content shown on YouTube grew. It includes sexual, extremist and unhealthy videos shown on the platform.

One of the biggest changes the company is implementing is comment sections where "inappropriate sexual or predatory" remarks are made about minors will be completely shut down.

YouTube take in to account user feedback, expert opinion, and an automated computer programme to help them decide which content should be removed from YouTube.

But a series of news articles in recent weeks pointed to how poorly its filters were able to keep out scary or adult-themed content from its kids' app, and how content that exploited children was able to attract a wide following, earning money for its creators.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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