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Verizon and AT&T have a message for YouTube about its ‘hate-speech’ videos

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The post-Obama age of censorship is alive and well…

AT&T and Verizon have allowed themselves to become sidetracked from focusing on improved customer service — see uninterrupted coverage — in the pursuit of political correctness.

In response to a movement that began in the U.K., where some advertisers have been boycotting YouTube over ads placed next to what is being interpreted as hate-speech videos, the telecommunication giants are now on board.

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It’s not clear who gets to decide what is or is not hate speech.

“We are deeply concerned that our ads may have appeared alongside YouTube content promoting terrorism and hate,” AT&T said in a prepared statement Wednesday, Variety reported. “Until Google can ensure this won’t happen again, we are removing our ads from Google’s non-search platforms.”

Their competitors at Verizon were quick to follow suit.

“We take careful measure to ensure our brand is not impacted negatively,” Verizon said in a released statement. “Once we were notified that our ads were appearing on non-sanctioned websites, we took immediate action to suspend this type of ad placement and launched an investigation.”

More from Variety on what prompted the boycott:

The backlash against ads placed in extremist YouTube videos began last week in the U.K., when it came to light that some ads were appearing against YouTube videos posted by American white nationalists, anti-gay preachers and radical Islamic groups. British advertisers that have said they are pulling ads from YouTube include McDonald’s, the BBC, L’Oréal, Marks & Spencer, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds, the Guardian, Audi, Channel 4 and Havas’ British unit.

 

A liberal bastion in its own right, Google was quick to announce it has “begun an extensive review of our advertising policies and have made a public commitment to put in place changes that give brands more control over where their ads appear.”

Google chief business officer Philipp Schindler let it be know in a piece written on Tuesday that the company hears the concerns of its advertisers.

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“We know advertisers don’t want their ads next to content that doesn’t align with their values,” Schindler wrote. “So starting today, we’re taking a tougher stance on hateful, offensive and derogatory content.”

Tom Tillison

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