YouTube offers $3 refunds to some advertisers impacted by brand safety scandal

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 4 July 2017

YouTube has offered some advertisers a US$3 refund for having their ads displayed alongside extremist content.

The gesture from the video streaming giant had been intended to lure back advertisers who have moved away from the platform following its brand safety scandal earlier this year.

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 by at least one.

A spokesperson for YouTube issued a statement that did not address the amount offered but said: “When someone violates our ads policy repeatedly, we terminate the account, credit our advertisers and do not pay the content creator or publisher.”

The Google-owned company’s advertising policy states that in instances where ads run on websites that were not part of the advertisers’ campaign plans, then advertisers can request a credit for the amount of money spent. 

Google and other technology groups are under growing pressure from advertisers to crack down on extremism online.

Google has been strengthening its brand safety controls with a slate of new tools aimed at weeding out "offensive" content.

Earlier this year, Telstra, Holden, Vodafone and the government were among the many organisations who stopped advertising on YouTube until a solution is found to avoid ads being placed against undesirable content.

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