Bloomberg: Google Helps Place Ads on Sites Amplifying Covid-19 Conspiracies

Bloomberg: Google Helps Place Ads on Sites Amplifying Covid-19 Conspiracies. “Google has taken aggressive action to scrub coronavirus conspiracies from its news service and YouTube, at a time when social media companies have come under intense scrutiny for their potential to spread dangerous disinformation about the global pandemic. It has begun labeling misleading videos aimed at U.S. audiences, and has joined with other major internet companies to coordinate a response against what the World Health Organization has described as an ‘infodemic.’ But Google is also placing advertisements on websites that publish the theories, helping their owners generate revenue and continue their operations. In at least one instance, Google has run ads featuring a conspiracist it has already banned.”

BuzzFeed News: Facebook Banned Mask Ads. They’re Still Running.

BuzzFeed News: Facebook Banned Mask Ads. They’re Still Running.. “Founded in 2015, ZestAds sources cheap electronics, clothing, and household products from China to sell around the globe using slick and at times misleading Facebook ads. On its website, ZestAds claims to be one of the top e-commerce companies in Asia. Since March, the company has made a mockery of Facebook’s ban by running ads that dangerously claimed its masks would ‘fully protect’ from the virus, cited a fake expert, and falsely listed US companies as behind the ads.”

Gizmodo: Google’s Fighting A Losing Battle Against Coronavirus Scammers

Gizmodo: Google’s Fighting A Losing Battle Against Coronavirus Scammers. “Bad actors in advertising have a reputation of being notoriously slimy, doing anything they can to tiptoe around the guardrails put up by companies like Google. One early-April post on a popular ad-fraudster forum mentioned that the mask ban could be pretty much bypassed by avoiding certain obvious keywords, like ‘mask’ or ‘virus.’ It could explain how the ‘Healthcare Products’ ad slipped through the story I was reading, since you and I might both know that KN95 refers to the popular face mask, but might register to Google’s algorithms as a garbled set of letters and numbers.”

City A.M.: Google removes 2.7bn bad ads as it launches Covid-19 taskforce

City A.M.: Google removes 2.7bn bad ads as it launches Covid-19 taskforce. “Google removed roughly 2.7bn so-called bad ads last year as the tech giant ramps up its efforts to block misleading and malicious campaigns actors on its platform. The search engine’s crackdown, which equates to 5,000 ads per minute, is an increase on the 2.3bn adverts removed in 2018.”

CNET: Reddit is publicly tracking all political ads on its site ahead of 2020 election

CNET: Reddit is publicly tracking all political ads on its site ahead of 2020 election. “Reddit is updating its political ad policies in an attempt to increase transparency ahead of the 2020 election. All political ad campaigns running on Reddit will now be publicly tracked in a subreddit, r/RedditPoliticalAds, and include information like spending and impressions, the company said Monday.”

Coronavirus: Google bans adverts on 5G conspiracy theories (City A.M.)

City A.M.: Coronavirus: Google bans adverts on 5G conspiracy theories. “Google has rolled out new measures to crack down on misleading health claims about 5G and conspiracy theories that the mobile technology is linked to coronavirus. The search giant has banned advertising on search terms and keywords that relate to false information about 5G to prevent profiteering from the public health emergency.”