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Brands Pull YouTube Ads Post-Child Exploitation Crisis

Olivia Long - February 22, 2019 - 08:27 AM
Brands Pull YouTube Ads Post-Child Exploitation Crisis
Several top brands have removed their advertising from YouTube following a child exploitation scandal on the platform.

(CCM) — A host of big brands have pulled their advertising from YouTube after a vlogger accused pedophiles of using the website to purposefully exchange information about and content featuring young girls, according to a report by CNN.

The 20-minute video by vlogger Matt Watson has been viewed over 2.4 million times since he posted it earlier this week. In the video’s caption, Watson laments the fact that child pornography is seemingly being traded in a niche section of the platform, which he refers to as a “soft-core pedophilia ring.”

He also points out the fact that YouTube appears to facilitate its access through its recommendations: “I can consistently get access to it from vanilla, never-before-used Youtube accounts via innocuous videos in less than ten minutes, in sometimes less than five clicks.” Additionally, and perhaps most worryingly, Watson claims to have evidence of these videos being monetized, citing brands as influential as Disney as advertisers on the offending clips.

The release of the video has led to a wave of brands removing their advertising from the platform. Nestle has decided to “pause” its advertising on YouTube after some of its ads were tied to videos “where inappropriate comment were being made,” according to a company spokesperson. Fortnite creator Epic Games and McDonald’s have paused their advertising. Disney has also suspending its advertising on YouTube, according to the report.

Image: ©iStock.
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