Google says they don’t tolerate hate speech. So why are thousands of anti-Semitic videos allowed to stay active on YouTube? This action has many worried, and Google is losing adverts over it. Maybe they’ll listen to people’s concerns when the money leaves. But do you think it’s too late for them?
YouTube and its parent company Google have been accused of continuing to host thousands of anti-Semitic hate videos in defiance of their own guidelines, as the UK government announced it was withdrawing advertising from the global video-sharing giant.
French advertising agency Havas, one of the world’s largest marketing groups, pulled hundreds of UK clients out of Google’s advertising network Friday after revelations in the Times newspaper that taxpayers and commercial brands were unknowingly funding extremists through adverts. Dozens of other brands have also allegedly withdrawn their business while Havas said it was also considering a global freeze on YouTube and Google ads.
The Times found adverts were appearing alongside content from supporters of extremist groups, making them around £6 per 1,000 viewers, as well as making money for the company.
The Times has now revealed why the commercial retreat from YouTube has gathered pace with its analysis showing that more than 200 anti-Semitic videos are hosted on YouTube. In selective cases, the offensive videos were uploaded years ago and have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times. Some even hosted advertising, suggesting anti-Semites may be enjoying a commercial advantage from perceived association with well-known brands, the newspaper reports.
Content of the videos varied, but relied on common themes that claimed Jews start global conflicts for profit, or perpetuate the ancient blood libel that Jews kill Christian children while keeping others as slaves. Holocaust denial is another thematic variation.