According to NBC’s News Verification Center (what?), two right-leaning blogs, ZeroHedge and The Federalist, have been threatened with prohibition from the Google Ad platform.

Their News Verification Center (again, what? Aren’t they a news network?) tweeted Tuesday:

According to the article, both sites are being held responsible for the content  including that contained in their comment section. I mean, hello, has anyone ever ventured into the cesspool of YouTube comments? Anyone? Google should be banning itself, if the standard were equally applied.

From the article:

Google has banned two far-right websites from its advertising platform after research revealed the tech giant was profiting from articles pushing unsubstantiated claims about the Black Lives Matter protests.

The two sites, ZeroHedge and The Federalist, will no longer be able to generate revenue from any advertisements served by Google Ads.

A Google spokesperson said in an email that it took action after determining the websites violated its policies on content related to race.

“We have strict publisher policies that govern the content ads can run on and explicitly prohibit derogatory content that promotes hatred, intolerance, violence or discrimination based on race from monetizing,” the spokesperson wrote. “When a page or site violates our policies, we take action. In this case, we’ve removed both sites’ ability to monetize with Google.”

After publication of this story, Google added that it takes into account all of the content on a website including comments to determine if a policy violation has occurred, which is where the policy violations occurred.

Google notified ZeroHedge of the policy violations last week and banned the website from its ad platform.

Google notified The Federalist on Tuesday of policy violations. It now has three days to remove the violations before the ban goes into effect.

Google’s ban of the websites comes after the company was notified of research conducted by the Center for Countering Digital Hate, a British nonprofit that combats online hate and misinformation. They found that 10 U.S-based websites have published what they say are racist articles about the protests, and projected that the websites would make millions of dollars through Google Ads.

As if the comment inclusion isn’t frightening enough, it was NBC News who ratted out the allegedly racist content to Google, prompting a response. NBC ctd:

Google blocked The Federalist from its advertising platform after the NBC News Verification Unit brought the project to its attention. ZeroHedge had already been demonetized prior to NBC News’ enquiry, Google said. ZeroHedge and The Federalist did not respond to requests for comment.

Imran Ahmed, CEO of the Center for Countering Digital Hate, said it found advertisements for many companies that had otherwise made public statements supporting Black Lives Matter and the recent protests running on the websites.

“We found that lots of those companies are inadvertently funding through their advertising content that is outright racist in defense of white supremacism and contains conspiracy theories about George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement,” he said.

Google has banned various websites from its advertising platform in recent years, mostly targeting fake news operations.

ZeroHedge and The Federalist have become well known in recent years for publishing far-right articles on a variety of subjects. On the recent protests, ZeroHedge published an article claiming that protests were fake, while The Federalist published an article claiming the media had been lying about looting and violence during the protests, which were both included in the report sent to Google.

A reporter seeking clarification teased out that de-monetization is likely imminent for The Federalist, though not yet in effect:

But no one got it right, still. Not NBC, not the AdWeek guy, Scott Nover, because then Google clarified saying:

Good job, NBC News Verification Center. You have one job and you failed.

So NBC ratted out the blogs, Google threatened them because of what appear to be bad comments. Is there even an internet without terrible comments? Isn’t that what fuels it?

“Outrageous” is so overused is has lost most meaning, but this is truly, outrageous. A national media corporation conspired with the world’s largest tech giant to cut off funds to two blogs because of “wrongthinking” and doesn’t even provide the reader with the opportunity to make that determination on their own. Doesn’t matter what you think of the content, how this happened and that it happened is frightening.

Also this:

 

This. ALL of this is why the conservative blogosphere exists. We and our readers were left behind by activists pretending to be journalists portraying everything we breathe, say, and do, as racist, bigoted, and wrong.

NBC poked a giant, cranky bear and I doubt they’re ready for the backlash. Every single major media outlet in our country seems to be in a balls to the wall race to see who can obliterate the last, single shred of dignity left in the industry.

UPDATE:

 

 
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