Google-owned YouTube is coming under criticism (again) after allowing disturbing content to run on the platform.
Following an alarming report posted by blogger Matt Watson stating that YouTube is allowing ‘soft-core pedophilia’ to spread, a lot of brands are said to have pulled their advertising spending from YouTube.
In the report, Watson showed how users can use the comment section on YouTube to identity sexually suggestive videos of children. YouTube’s algorithm will then begin to recommend similar videos. He wrote: “YouTube’s recommended algorithm is facilitating pedophiles’ ability to connect with each other, trade contact info, and link to actual CP in the comments.”
Bloomberg reported that Disney had joined Nestlé, Epic Game and other companies in postponing their advertising out of concern about the report and because their ads were shown before the videos where pedophiles had infiltrated the comment sections: “Disney has also withheld its spending, according to people with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified because the decision hasn’t been made public.”
Sadly for YouTube, this is not the first time it has been hit by issues around advertising. In 2017, a similar case happened and the incident is now known as “The adpocalypse”.
This second wave of ad abandonment will make it harder for creators to make money from their work as it will lead to stricter monetization rules.