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Google and YouTube Say They will Cut off climate-change Deniers from Being Able to Monetize Their Content and Display Ads

Google stated on Thursday that it would no longer allow adverts or monetization for content that encourages denialism about climate change. Publishers, advertisers, and YouTube creators will be affected by the policy change since they will no longer be able to profit from content that “contradicts well-established scientific consensus on the presence and causes of climate change.”

The new policy will be enforced by a combination of automated detection and human moderation, and it will take effect next month. While the new rules leave some leeway for interpretation, they “[include] 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,” according to Google.

The policy adjustments, according to the Google Advertising team, reflect the advertiser’s request to “not have ads show next to this content.” Creators and publishers also state in a blog post that they don’t want adverts on their videos that deny climate change, which is true given that Google’s video platform is swamped with misleading material. It appears to be a little suspicious.

Google’s new policy is tough on misleading claims about the climate crisis, but social media platforms have only just begun to acknowledge their role in spreading climate-related misinformation. In the past, YouTube has been infamously reluctant to implement new restrictions intended to stem the spread of misinformation, including misleading claims about the US election.

In the end, the policy is a step forward — all platforms should develop robust rule sets in response to humanity’s rising existential threat — but such rules can only make an impact in the disinformation ecosystem if they are implemented vigorously and consistently.

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