Fortnite Ads Pulled From YouTube After Predator Controversy


"Any content - including comments - that endangers minors is abhorrent and we have clear policies prohibiting this on YouTube", a YouTube spokesperson said. But it remains to be seen if YouTube can fully stop the problem.

The shocking video has been edited in between the Nintendo game Splatoon and the man Filthy Frank a YouTuber says "Remember, kids, sideways for attention, longways for results".

A report from BuzzFeed caused companies to pull their advertising from anti-vaccination videos on YouTube.

This purge of comments and channel terminations follows after a US man, called Matt Watson, uploaded a video titled YouTube Is Facilitating the Sexual Exploitation of Children, and it's Being Monetised (2019) which caused a huge backlash from YouTuber Keem Star who shared his thoughts on his channel DramaAlert.

YouTube responded quickly, disabling comments on tens of millions of videos featuring children and reporting accounts that made predatory comments to police. While YouTube repeatedly claims that objectionable material like conspiracy videos represent well under 1% of its overall content, that would still represent millions of videos. The algorithm changes initially will affect recommendations for a very small set of videos in the USA, with plans to expand internationally.

Epic Games, the maker of the wildly popular game Fortnite, has "paused all pre-roll advertising" on YouTube and "reached out to Google/YouTube to determine actions they'll take to eliminate this type of content from their service", according to a company spokesperson.

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This comes in the wake of YouTube removing millions of videos and channels a year ago for spam, scams, extreme content, or conspiracy theories.

The platform has also reported comments to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and is taking further steps against child exploitation, including hiring more experts. Several companies reportedly asked YouTube to stop their ads from being placed on the videos, while one - a discount vitamin company called Vitacost - pulled their ads from YouTube entirely, according to the report.

However, the survey also found that marketing professionals ranked YouTube as the least brand-safe platform out of eight possible choices, behind Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, search, other publisher sites, LinkedIn, and Snapchat.

In 2017, AT&T, Verizon and Johnson & Johnson stopped YouTube ad spending after some ads ran over videos allegedly supporting ISIS.

Social platforms have distanced from making these decisions. "They're going to come back because YouTube offers uniquely attractive levels of audience targeting capability and audience engagement", says Schraeder.

Let's hope YouTube solve the problem soon.