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BizReport : Advertising archives : March 06, 2015

Big brands' ads found playing before ISIS YouTube videos

A new case of advertising placed in inappropriate environments has come to light. YouTube ads for major brands were found to be playing before ISIS and Jihadi extremist videos.

by Helen Leggatt

Are your ads appearing alongside inappropriate YouTube content that could harm your brand's reputation? Do you even know?

According to research by Project Sunblock late last year, 7.78 billion display ad impressions are served up on websites that could damage a brand's reputation including pornographic sites, sites that promote, illegal drugs, malware, celebrity scandals, natural disasters and violence.

Ads for banks have been spotted on pornographic websites, and ads for broadband providers on peer-to-peer websites promoting illegal downloads.

The latest ad misplacement errors involve YouTube and ISIS. Big advertisers, including Procter & Gamble and Anheuser-Busch, were not aware their ads were being used as pre-roll before ISIS videos on YouTube.

Pre-roll ads are automatically inserted in front of videos and YouTube has guidelines about what content is appropriate for advertising. However, with hundreds of hours of video uploaded to the site each and every minute, monitoring video content is difficult.

"We also have stringent advertising guidelines, and work to prevent ads appearing against any video, channel or page once we determine that the content is not appropriate for our advertising partner," a spokesperson for YouTube told CNNMoney.

Twinsterphoto /

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: advertising, video, YouTube

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