Marketing 2 min read

Publishing Groups Want Ads Alongside Coronavirus Content

Kira_Yan / Shutterstock.com

Kira_Yan / Shutterstock.com

Two publishing groups, News Media Alliance and Digital Content Next, have asked advertising agencies to allow ads alongside coronavirus content.

Two major news organizations in the United States News Media Alliance and Digital Content Next — have called on advertising agencies to allow ads near coronavirus news stories.

It’s common knowledge that advertising agencies don’t want their ads running alongside content that consumers may find upsetting. Whether the post is about natural disasters, mass killings, or even pandemics, advertisers don’t want their product or service linked with specific issues.

So, ad agencies use keyword blocking technology to blacklist specific words, which in turn prevent ads from appearing adjacent such the content.

With the current COVID-19 pandemic, many ad agencies have had to pause their ad work to review their ad messages. Meanwhile, brands that are currently advertising have blacklisted the coronavirus keyword.

Here’s why this is a problem.

Using Keyword Blocking to Prevent Ads From Appearing Alongside Coronavirus Content

According to industry sources, this blacklist prevents ads from appearing alongside COVID-19 news.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau revealed that digital sites have seen ads drop by 33 percent due to the pandemic. But, the problem is worse for news websites that have devoted over half of their coverage to coronavirus-related stories.

Now, News Media Alliance and Digital Content Next, are asking ad agencies to stop using keyword blocking with pandemic-related content.

In a statement to the press, president and CEO of News Media Alliance, David Chavern said:

“News organizations are working tirelessly to provide reliable and trustworthy information to their communities. Keyword blocking serves to punish publishers for this very same coverage with potentially catastrophic effects.”

The News Media Alliance president and CEO further pointed out the need to ensure the continued sustainability of high-quality journalism. Otherwise, we risk an information disaster.

This is a global emergency,” says Chavern. “And the public needs access to information that helps them protect their families, plan for their futures, and learn about public health efforts to combat this pandemic.”

Read More: Google Launches New Search Experience for Coronavirus Queries

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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