Google demanded Antiwar.com delete an article on the civil war in Ukraine and remove content on torture by the US military in Iraq. Google also blocks ads to websites in nations against whom the US has imposed sanctions
|When the big bucks starting flowing, Google got very evil. (Steve Rhodes. Flickr, CC)|
Founder and director of Antiwar.com, Garris just wrote the piece “Google Doubles Down: Demands Review of All Antiwar.com Content,” which states: “On Wednesday morning (3/18/15), Google AdSense suspended ad delivery to Antiwar.com demanding that we remove our 11-year-old pages that showed the abuse by U.S. soldiers of Iraqi detainees at Abu Ghraib. We publicized this and got a bit of coverage. [See in Gawker: 'Google Suspends Site from Ad Network for Abu Ghraib Photo."]
“Yesterday [Thursday] Google contacted us and told us that they had given in and would be restoring ad service to Antiwar.com shortly.
“However, this morning [Friday] they contacted us demanding that we remove this article.
“Antiwar.com has no intention of allowing Google to dictate our content. We are looking into alternate sources of advertising and will not likely be working with Google AdSense in the future.”
JILLIAN YORK, jillian at eff.org, @jilliancyork, @onlinecensors
York leads the new project onlinecensorship.org at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. She said: “While Google is well within its legal rights to regulate content — and has good reasons to ensure certain violent content doesn’t make it to AdSense, in this case it came down on the wrong side of what was clearly content in the public interest: images that demonstrate torture by the U.S. military.”
In her article “Can Apple Refuse to Sell a Laptop to an Iranian Citizen? Maybe,” York noted: “Google reportedly blocks Persian-language advertisements because of the prohibition on financial transactions targeting Iranians. Given that there are only small pockets of Persian speakers outside of Iran, it would be difficult for Google to argue they’re not targeting Iranians with ads in Persian; therefore, blocking the advertisements entirely ensures that they’re in compliance with the regulations.”