INTRO: As a part of its continuing efforts to stop misinformation about COVID-19, Google will block more ads from websites that promote conspiracy theories about the disease. The company, on Friday, said that it’ll use human and automatic reviews to detect websites and advertisers who were actively indulging in spreading harmful information online. The new policy will go into effect on August 18th.
“We are putting additional safeguards in situ by expanding our harmful health claims policies for both publishers and advertisers to incorporate dangerous content a few health crises that contradict scientific consensus”, a Google spokesperson said. As a part of the plan, the corporate will prohibit content that “contradicts authoritative scientific consensus” during major health crises.
The search giant further claimed that it’s already removed quite 200 million ads that were intentionally spreading misinformation about the pandemic. It also vowed to require action against sites that perpetuate outrageous conspiracy theories about the pandemic. Sites that don’t change their policies may eventually face a permanent ban from the lucrative Google Ads platform.
Conspiracy theories around the pandemic have mushroomed across all major online platforms over the past few months. While some claim that 5G networks are spreading the coronavirus around the world, others claim that it had been created as a bio-weapon by the Chinese government. Another popular conspiracy theory goes even further to say that Microsoft co-founder, Gates, funded the creation of the deadly virus. Of course, leading scientists and investigative journalists have debunked each and each one among these conspiracy theories.