Monday, May 8, 2017

YouTube CEO promises to “do better” at keeping ads off extremist material | UNLIMITED | CMU


YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki used her company’s annual Brandcast event last week to address the recent backlash over concerns that adverts were being placed by the Google video site alongside extremist material.

As previously reported, an assortment of agencies and big brands pulled ads from YouTube over concerns that a lack of control over where their commercials went could be causing brand damage, thanks to their association with and apparent funding of extremism. Both music video platform Vevo and the UK radio industry attempted to capitalise on this by talking up the safety they provide their advertisers.

Acknowledging the backlash, Wojcicki said, according to The Hollywood Reporter: “I want you to know that we have taken your feedback to heart. We work hard every day to earn our advertisers’ and agencies’ trust. We apologise for letting some of you down. We can, and we will, do better”.

The rest of Wojcicki’s presentation was more upbeat about YouTube’s role in the current media world, as was the wider event. “The platforms for the future are different from the ones of the past”, she said. “YouTube is not TV and never will be”.

That seems like a slightly odd statement, as the company launched its YouTube TV subscription service just two months ago. Also, the big announcement at Brandcast was a collection of new ad-funded original shows, which seem to aimed directly at drawing audiences away from traditional TV.

On the music side, Katy Perry appeared at the event to announce that she would be part of a new Ryan Seacrest produced and Ludacris hosted talent show called ‘Best.Cover.Ever’. Jason Derulo, Demi Lovato and The Backstreet Boys will also appear on the programme.

Perry will also host the ‘Katy Perry Live Special’, a live-streamed listening party for her new album, while Lovato will be the subject of documentary series ‘I Am: Demi Lovato’, following the writing and recording of her new album.

So, at least some artists are still talking to YouTube HQ. Though maybe only until their shiny new shows get playlisted alongside extremist videos.


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