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Cisco pulls its ads from YouTube

Cisco Systems (CSCO) decided to remove all its online advertisements from YouTube over fears of brand tarnishment in case of the ads appearing on graphic or sensitive content on the platform. The statement was made by Karen Walker, Cisco’s Chief Marketing Officer, in a blog on Wednesday. The post appears to have been removed on Thursday.

The blog post said the company did not want its ads to end up in the wrong place by accident such as on a streaming video with sensitive content. The company will continue to use YouTube to share its video content.

Cisco systems headquarters
Image courtesy: Coolcaesar, Wikimedia Commons

Cisco said some platforms were not doing enough in terms of monitoring the content that gets posted on their sites. It said that Google (GOOGL) and Facebook (FB) had taken some steps to tackle the issue but it has decided to pull its ads from YouTube until proper standards were met. Sensitive material tends to spread fast and Cisco did not want its ads to end up alongside any graphic content by mistake in a way that could negatively affect its brand.

Last month CNN had reported that advertisements from over 300 companies, including Cisco, were spotted on extremist YouTube channels. The companies may have inadvertently helped in financing some channels through these ads.

YouTube’s parent Google said it is working with its advertisers to rectify the issues and bring about changes through stringent controls and policies. YouTube also said it deleted around 5 million videos from its platform last year for content policy violations before they reached viewers.

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