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US firms pull ads from Google as boycott over hate videos grows


Major US firms have pulled advertising from Google's YouTube platform as the internet giant faces widening pressure over hate videos.

Communications firms AT&T and Verizon suspended marketing on the platform after discovering their brands appearing alongside videos promoting terrorism and other inappropriate content.
The spreading corporate boycott, which began in the UK after revelations in The Times, threatens to dent Google's multi-billion dollar ad revenue.
It has already seen big companies including Marks & Spencer, Tesco, Sainsbury's, Volkswagen, L'Oreal, RBS, HSBC and Lloyds suspending ads, as well as the UK Government.
Google has apologised and said it would step up its efforts to block ads on "hateful, offensive and derogatory" videos.
It has pledged to police its websites better by hiring new staff and overhauling its policies.
But it has not been enough to stop the ad boycott spreading across the Atlantic to major US firms.


AT&T said: "We are deeply concerned that our ads may have appeared alongside YouTube content promoting terrorism and hate."
It said until the problem was fixed it was pulling ads from Google platforms other than its main search engine results.
Verizon said in a statement that it had decided to pull ads from YouTube to protect its website while investigating "weak links" among its digital advertising partners.
Both AT&T and Verizon are also trying to sell more digital ads in their own networks.
YouTube has become one of the fastest growing parts of Google's ad system, which generated $79bn (£63bn) in revenue last year.
Google does not disclose how much of this is from YouTube but research firm eMa

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