New research suggests that Google, the tech giant with a stranglehold on the digital ads market, has been violating its own standards when placing video ads on YouTube and third-party websites up to 80 percent of the time.
The Wall Street Journal reports that a recent study conducted by ad research firm Adalytics shows that woke tech giant Google has been violating its own guidelines for placing video advertisements on third-party websites. The comprehensive study reveals that approximately 80 percent of Google’s video ad placements on these platforms did not adhere to the company’s own stipulated standards.
Google’s guidelines for ad placements state that advertisements should be displayed on high-quality sites, positioned prior to the main video content, with the audio activated, and that brands should only be charged for ads that are not skipped by viewers. However, the study accuses Google of deviating from these guidelines by placing ads in small, muted, automatically-played videos that are positioned away from a page’s main content, and on sites that do not meet Google’s monetization standards, among other infractions.
The study is based on an extensive analysis of data from campaigns of over 1,100 brands that received billions of ad impressions between 2020 and 2023. Major brands such as Johnson & Johnson, American Express, Samsung, Sephora, Macy’s, Disney, and the Wall Street Journal were among those implicated in these alleged violations.
Google has disputed the study and its claim, asserting that the report is inaccurate and does not reflect their efforts to ensure advertiser safety. Despite the tech giant’ rebuttal, several advertising buyers who have reviewed the research are demanding refunds.
This study raises significant questions about the transparency of Google’s online ad operations and the broader digital advertising market, where tracking financial transactions is challenging, making it difficult for brands to verify that they are receiving the services they paid for.