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Google plans to revamp its ad policies

25 March 2017

Wireless carriers Verizon Communications Inc and AT&T Inc said on Wednesday they would suspend digital ads on YouTube, joining a list of well-known British brands such as retailer Marks and Spencer Group Plc that are deserting Alphabet Inc's Google. The U.K. government said it suspended advertising on YouTube until the site can ensure they're not placed next to content it doesn't approve of.

According to the damning report, an ad appearing alongside a YouTube video typically earns advertisers $7.60 per every 1,000 views, meaning companies were unwittingly funding extremists and inciting hatred and violence to boost their profit.

Today, Johnson & Johnson said it to would pull all its ad spends as it wanted to ensure that its ads did not appear on channels that promote "offensive content". However, there have been no other reports detailing instances in which ads from the companies named above ran over offensive content on YouTube or Google's Display Network. "We're also raising the bar for our ads policies to further safeguard our advertisers' brands".

That said, it's in Alphabet's best interest to address the issue in "short order", as the bulk of its overall revenue is derived from advertising, Hargreaves said. As such, they're boycotting Google advertising until the tech giant develops more accurate security measures for advertisers.

"Google isn't yet fully addressing advertisers' concerns and needs to take stronger steps to regain the trust of brands", Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak wrote in a note to clients Thursday.

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And Google already has some protections in place for companies that are anxious about brand safety, such as its Google Preferred feature, which allows advertisers to choose a subset of content partners to associate with, Hargreaves said. "The intention of these policies is to prohibit ads from appearing on pages or videos with hate speech, gory or offensive content". This brand safety issue first flared up in the U.K and European markets when ad giant Havas, along with major media organizations, halted Google ad spend, but the move has since been echoed by a number of big-name USA brands.

Multiple advertisers, such as AT&T and Verizon, have recently pulled the plug due to their ads being show on YouTube adjacent to disturbing videos promoting terrorism and attacking homosexuality. Google will likewise screen YouTube content all the more almost, and it will probably roll out improvements to the YouTube people group rules that will (ideally) plainly layout what will be arranged as fanatic substance or detest discourse. Untouched by the boycott is Google's lucrative search advertising business.

While advertisers won't begin planning - much less negotiating - their 2017-18 video advertising budgets in earnest for another couple of months, the fallout will put YouTube, and its ilk, in a weak negotiating position.

While YouTube revenue is not reported separately, analysts say the video site brings in billions of dollars a year and that it is among Google's top-growing businesses.

Rajan Anandan, Vice-President and Managing Director, South-East Asia and India, Google, told BusinessLine that the company is set to give brands more control over where their ads appear, and that the company itself has a rigorous brand-safety policy in place.

Google plans to revamp its ad policies