Google to pause US political ads before presidential inauguration

FILE PHOTO: Mountain View, California, US, on May 8, 2019, has been signed out near the company’s headquarters.

(Reuters) – After last week’s violence in the Capitol, Alphabet Inc.’s Google will stop selling political ads selling U.S. elections during its services until at least January 21, according to an email from advertisers seen by Reuters .

The email states that the action “took place ahead of the unprecedented events of the previous week and the upcoming presidential inauguration,” which takes place on 20 January.

In a statement, Google said it would “temporarily pause all political advertisements in the US Capitol, other than any advertisement referencing impeachment, inauguration or protests.”

The move, to take effect on Thursday, will be no exception for news organizations or merchants running ads.

On December 10, Google lifted a temporary ban on election-related advertisements, which went into effect after voting stopped in the November US presidential election and aimed to prevent misinformation and other abuses on its platforms.

Facebook Inc. also stopped political ads after the November 3 election, with only brief ads surrounding the US Senate election in Georgia earlier this month.

A Google spokesman said the company had been employing a limited version of its “sensitive incident” policy since the US Capitol’s 6 storm by supporters of President Donald Trump, which meant that advertisements referred to political violence in the Capitol Was not allowed. .

The policy seeks to restrict material that potentially prohibits incidents such as public health emergencies or natural disasters.

In the email, which was first reported by Axios, Google reminded its policy against advertisers against advertisements promoting hate or violence. “Looking at the events of the past week, we are extremely cautious about applying to any advertisement that crosses this line.

Reporting by Elizabeth Culliford in New York and Eva Matthews in Bengaluru; Editing by Mark Potter and Matthew Lewis


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