afaqs! news bureau

Google faces accusations of ad fraud, misleading advertisers

The tech giant has fallen into a spat with advertisers over alleged deceit as revealed by a third-party analytics company Adalytics.

A recent report by Adalytics, an analytics company, has revealed that Google may have violated its own terms and conditions, and may have deceived advertisers about viewer count on some ads.

The tech giant has come out to deny all claims as ‘extremely inaccurate’. 

Adalytics revealed that Google’s ads are placed across low quality websites, including sites with misinformation and pirated content. The ads are placed in small video players, and sometimes are even devoid of any audio, according to the report. 

Google Video Partner (GVP) network and TrueView are Google’s proprietary tools that enable placement of video ads on external websites and apps. As per The Wall Street Journal, Google promises brands to place their ads on high-quality websites, and that the ads will appear before the main content of a video. However, the report by Adalytics claims that Google is unable to hold true to its own standards nearly 80% of the time.

The report also highlighted that in some cases the skip button that appears after five seconds was also obscured, forcing viewers to watch the whole ad. “That is a direct violation of Google’s quality standards for TrueView ads,” Adalytics claims.

Google’s global video solutions chief, Marvin Renaud, firmly rejected the report findings. In a blog post, Renaud stated that Adalytics had used unreliable sampling and proxy methodologies.

For the report, Adalytics reviewed ad campaigns for more than 1,100 brands between 2020 and 2023. Amongst the ‘victims’ of this ad fraud, the report named the US Government, The European Parliament, Disney+, HP, Samsung, Sephora, TikTok, Microsoft and General Motors.

Have news to share? Write to us