YouTube has removed hundreds of campaign ads for Trump’s reelection campaign. According to revelations made by CBS News’ 60 Minutes, over 300 ads were removed for violating YouTube’s policy in recent months.
Despite this, there’s no information about specifically why the ads were removed or the policy they violated. The 60 Minutes report also noted that it was unable to establish whether the ads were deleted because they contained false information or violated copyrights. The CBS program made the findings after analyzing Google’s transparency reports. Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc. owns YouTube.
Nonetheless, the report found that many of the ads removed had run for many days before they were taken down. This latest report comes barely weeks after Facebook came under fire for failing to remove Trump ads that contained false information from its platform.
Facebook noted that political ads are not subjected to third-party fact-checking. The social media giant also noted that it doesn’t want to play referee in US politics. The company argued that it’s only fair that any political ad placed on its platform reaches the target audience as intended.
Social media companies have been blamed by lawmakers for doing very little to curb the spread of misinformation through their platforms. Some analysts have even pointed out that there have been several cases of policy violations on these platforms and yet nothing has been done.
Despite this, the companies have been trying to address the problem. Just recently, Facebook announced that it had discovered and removed a network of fake accounts primarily designed to spread misinformation on the platform. Twitter, on the other hand, also deleted thousands of fake profiles as part of its long-term effort to curb misinformation.
But many analysts still feel that more needs to be done to fully address the problem. Social media companies have also been getting some heat from the right. The companies have been accused of censoring conservative viewpoints.
Trump even accused Google of intentionally showing negative information when a search is done about him. These companies have denied these accusations. Responding to the 60 Minutes report, YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki noted that there are many successful conservative creators on the platform.
The video-sharing platform said that several Democrats have come forward and accused the company of discrimination, the same way conservative creators do. It’s not clear whether the company will release additional information about why the 300 ads from the Trump campaign were removed. But it looks like the company is ready to take decisive action if any of its policies are violated.