(Reuters) — French advertising group Havas denied on Friday that it would pull advertising from Google platforms, contradicting comments attributed to the head of its British business after Britain raised concerns over government advertising on the U.S. company’s YouTube website.
The British government had been expected to question Google executives on Friday over why advertisements marketing the government’s services were appearing alongside videos carrying hate speech and extremist content on its YouTube website.
The Guardian newspaper reported that Havas had decided to pull all its advertising spend from Google and YouTube, citing Havas UK chief Paul Frampton.
A spokeswoman for the French group told Reuters that pulling advertising from Google was not the group’s position, and Havas CEO Yannick Bollore said on Twitter that he had been unaware of its British unit’s decision.
“I will investigate what happened before making an official statement,” he added.
Google said in a statement that it worked hard to prevent advertisements from appearing on pages or videos with “hate speech, gory or offensive content” and said it had launched a review to give brands more control over where their advertisements appeared.
(Reporting by Gwenaelle Barzic and Michel Rose; Editing by David Goodman)