YouTube, Google Removing Hundreds of Trump Campaign Ads: Report
YouTube and Google have removed hundreds of video advertisements from President Donald Trump’s upcoming campaign, according to CBS News’ “60 Minutes.”
“60 Minutes” reviewed the company’s advertising archive and found that over 300 of the president’s political ads had been removed, primarily during the summer.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki confirmed in an interview with “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl on Sunday that some of Trump’s campaign ads “were not approved to run on Google or YouTube.”
When Stahl asked for an example, Wojcicki said, “Well, they’re available in our transparency report.”
However, when “60 Minutes” reviewed the transparency report, it found hundreds of video ads had been removed for violating company policy, but the report did not say which policies the ads violated.
“Was it copyright violation? A lie or extreme inaccuracy? Faulty grammar? Bad punctuation? It’s unclear. The ads determined to be offending are not available to be screened. We found very little transparency in the transparency report,” “60 Minutes” reported.
The archive does record the number of days each ad ran on the platform before being taken down, the approximate amount of money Google made from the ad and how many impressions it made.
The ads also usually ran for a few days before being removed, so they were still likely to reach their targets.
“As you know, conservatives think that you discriminate against them,” Stahl told Wojcicki. “How do you answer that?”
“Well, first of all, there are lots of very successful conservative creators on YouTube,” Wojcicki said. “Our systems, our algorithms, they don’t have any concept of understanding what’s a Democrat, what’s a Republican. They don’t have any concept of political bias built into them in any way. And we do hear this criticism from all sides.
“We also have people who come from more liberal backgrounds who complain about discrimination. And so I think that no matter who you are, we are trying to enforce our policies in a consistent way for everybody.”
Stahl also asked the YouTube CEO about a controversial ad on Facebook that claimed Joe Biden had offered military funding to Ukraine on the condition that they remove the prosecutor who was investigating a company connected with his son Hunter.
“Facebook is facing a lot of controversy because it refuses to take down a President Trump ad about Biden which is not true,” Stahl said. “Would you run that ad?”
“So that is an ad that right now would not be a violation of our policies,” Wojcicki replied. She confirmed that the ad had been on YouTube.
“Can a politician lie on YouTube?” Stahl asked.
“Politicians are always accusing their opponents of lying,” Wojcicki said. “That said, it’s not okay to have technically manipulated content that would be misleading. For example, there was a video uploaded of Nancy Pelosi. It was slowed down just enough that it was unclear whether or not she was in her full capacity because she was speaking in a slower voice. The title of the video actually said drunk, had that in the title. And we removed that video.”
Wojcicki told Stahl that the video had been quickly removed; however, “60 Minutes” found that it was still on its site.
The Western Journal has reached out to Google for comment but has not yet received a response. We will update this article if and when we do.
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