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Google says it won’t allow anti-Ukraine content to make money, removes ads from article talking about Nazi aspects of Azov Battalion

The tech giant has said that it will not show any ads on pages that has content that in their worldview ‘exploits, dismisses, or condones the war’

Google has sent a fresh communication to all publishers reminding them that the tech giant will not allow monetization of content that “exploits, dismisses, or condones the war” in Ukraine. The communication is a reinforcement of a new content policy that Google had notified on 23 March 2022.

In its latest communication, Google has reached out to publishers to explain the ramifications of this policy. “This update is meant to clarify, and in some cases expand, our publisher guidance as it relates to this conflict,” the communication says.

Publishers – bloggers, news websites, app content developers, and other such groups – earn money by displaying Google ads alongside their content. They also earn money by using Google’s Ad Manager tool, where they could choose to display advertisements that they directly get from clients without Google being the intermediary party. The policies set by Google affect even displaying such direct advertisements that use Google Ad Manager.

In simple terms, Google has said that it will not show any ads on pages that have content that in their worldview ‘exploits, dismisses, or condones the war’. This process is called the demonetization of articles or the pause of monetization. As a result, publishers will not be able to earn revenues if they publish anti-Ukraine articles.

The latest communication expounds a little on what kind of content Google thinks is not fit for monetization. It is pertinent to note that earlier, while the COVID pandemic was raging, Google was demonetizing several articles that were referring to COVID as the Wuhan Coronavirus or were discussing the lab leak theory.

“This pause (on monetization) includes, but is not limited to, claims that imply victims are responsible for their own tragedy or similar instances of victim-blaming, such as claims that Ukraine is committing genocide or deliberately attacking its own citizens,” Google has told the publishers.

OpIndia too received the communication and one of its articles titled “Winning ‘hearts’ and PR war, but Ukraine has a “Nazi” problem that NATO and USA do not talk about” was demonetized. The article doesn’t blame the people of Ukraine or justify the war in Ukraine in any way, but it just talks about some of the uncomfortable aspects of the conflict that many other people have also been pointing out i.e. presence of neo-Nazi elements in Ukraine’s establishment. Azov Battalion is one such element.

The war in Ukraine has also brought out how the big tech and social media companies could align themselves in international conflict and act as supernational entities. Russia has been at loggerheads with both Google and Meta (parent company of Facebook and Instagram) of late. Russia has banned Meta calling it an extremist organisation while it has also banned Google News for spreading misinformation.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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