Over the past 2 years calls for YouTube to cease and desist publishing of music videos that glamorise violence have fallen on deaf ears. However, now the country’s most senior police officer, Cressida Dick, has tied the surge in murders and violent crime back to certain videos, YouTube has started to take action. In the past week, the video streaming giant has removed over half of the videos they have been asked to take down over the past 2 years!
A spokeswoman from YouTube has said: “We have developed policies specifically to help tackle videos related to knife crime in the UK and are continuing to work constructively with experts on this issue. Along with others in the UK, we share the deep concern about this issue and do not want our platform used to incite violence.”
In the aftermath of big brands such as Mercedes and Scandals Resorts running adverts alongside extremist content, and where others like Tesco’s and L’Oréal have gone to the extreme of pulling their YouTube spend altogether, it comes as welcome news that YouTube is taking big strides to limit undesirable content; brands can start to feel safe in displaying their ads on the Google Display Network once more.
All Response Media viewpoint
Here at All Response Media we already work with the police to remove infringing websites/YouTube channels from our media activity, although we don’t just stop there! We implement strict negative keyword lists with thousands of undesirable keywords, campaign category exclusions that exclude categories of sites, content and placements, and we also remove any contentious topics. Where ARM differentiate themselves to many other agencies is that we have teams of individuals who fully immerse themselves in the brands we advertise with and we have even had instances where some teams have spent hours (even days) trawling through supplier whitelists to ensure our brands will continue to operate in a safe manner.
We can only view this move by YouTube as a positive sign of things to come and it goes a long way to restore the faith the advertising community, and even society, has in one on of the world’s biggest advertising platforms.