Last week Google announced a sweeping crackdown for false vaccine information spreading on youtube. Now Google is all set to take a crackdown on false climate change claims.
Google announced they would take action on digital ads for promoting misinformation on climate change claims or misinformation used to make money in the hope to limit their revenue to such false climate claimers and stop the circulation of false information on the platform.
Google said,” We heard from a growing number of our publisher and advertising partners who expressed concern about ads that promote false information or run alongside climate change. Advertisers don’t want to run their ad or don’t want their ads to appear next to such incorrect climate change information.” They added, ” The policy will also be applicable on Youtube.”. “
Further, according to their blog post about restrictions, ” we strictly prohibit ads for and monetization of content that contradict scientific harmony around the existence and cause of change in the climate.”
On addressing advertising publishers’ frustration, the company said, ” The changes are intended to counter the influencers who make money from youtube videos advertising climate change denial theories. We will place limits on content that spreads misinformation of climate change as a hoax or denying that human activity and greenhouse gas have contributed to earth’s long term warming.”
The climate change experts questioned whether or not the steps will effective
Environmental, a social science research fellow from Oxford, Lisa Schipper, Questioned,” how will they determine the misinformation or misleading or simple incomplete information? She also cited examples of how clean energy by fossil fuel companies suggests different kinds of truth on ads that might be more damaging.
The policy will take effect in December for advertisers, and in November for youtube creators and publishers, Google will use both human reviewers and automated tools to enforce their policy. However, advertising will still be allowed on related topics such as climate policy, public debates, etc.
Earlier, Google also launched a feature that aims to help users reduce their carbon footprint by including a search function that shows the carbon emissions of flights.
The issue of false information has been spreading around since Last week when Facebook’s false information came under the spotlight. Former data scientist cum whistleblower France Haugen informed members of congress how companies know about misinformation but still refuse to act upon it.
Now that Google has announced its policy, the problem of misinformation is again on the floor.