YouTube offers $3 refunds over ads linked to extremism

YouTube offers paltry $3 refunds over ads linked to extremism

YouTube has rubbed salt into the wounds of advertisers by offering refunds of a mere $3 for having their ads displayed alongside extremist content.

The goodwill gesture from the video streaming giant had been intended to lure ad agencies back to the fold, many of which have continued to shun the platform since the scandal first broke amid concern that their image could be compromised.

An investigation by the Financial Times found that at least three unnamed advertising firms had been approached with the offer of ‘a couple of dollars’, which was turned down out of hand by at least one.

Commenting on the compensation scheme, a spokesperson for YouTube owner Google did not address the amount offered. Instead they simply said: “When someone violates our ads policy repeatedly, we terminate the account, credit our advertisers and do not pay the content creator or publisher.”

YouTube policy allows advertisers to request a refund for money spent on advertising via websites that did not form part of the brand's campaign, but with relatively low traffic levels for extremist material these credits were extremely low.

In recent weeks YouTube has been ramping up measures to expunge extremist material from its platform in a bid to win back advertisers.

Rob Norman, chief digital officer for WPP-owned Group M, remarked: “The optics of giving these refunds are not great, but my guess is that Google had a technical responsibility to offer them.”

GroupM has been working with social video analytics firm OpenSlate in order to enhance brand safety.

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