Google on Friday announced a new monetisation policy for Google advertisers, publishers, and YouTube creators that will prohibit ads that contradict consensus around the existence and causes of climate change. Google said in recent years, it has heard directly from a growing number of its advertising and publisher partners, who have expressed concerns about ads that run alongside or promote inaccurate claims about climate change.
Advertisers don’t want their ads to appear next to this content, and publishers and creators don’t want ads promoting these claims to appear on their pages or videos, Google said in a blogpost. “That’s why today, we’re announcing a new monetisation policy for Google advertisers, publishers, and YouTube creators that will prohibit ads for, and monetisation of, content that contradicts well-established scientific consensus around the existence and causes of climate change…We’ll begin enforcing this policy next month,” it added.
This includes content referring to climate change as a hoax or a scam, claims denying that long-term trends show the global climate is warming, and claims denying that greenhouse gas emissions or human activity contribute to climate change. Google said when evaluating content against this new policy, it will look carefully at the context in which claims are made, differentiating between content that states a false claim as fact, versus content that reports on or discusses that claim.
“We will also continue to allow ads and monetisation on other climate-related topics, including public debates on climate policy, the varying impacts of climate change, new research and more,” it stated. Google said it has consulted “authoritative sources” on the topic of climate science, including experts who have contributed to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Assessment Reports in creating this policy and its parameters.
“As is the case for many of our policies, we’ll use a combination of automated tools and human review to enforce this policy against violating publisher content, Google-served ads, and YouTube videos that are monetising via YouTube’s Partner Programme,” it said. The US-based company said the new policy not only will help it strengthen the integrity of its advertising ecosystem, but it also “aligns strongly with the work we’ve done as a company over the past two decades to promote sustainability and confront climate change head-on”.