The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has crossed its borders into the digital world, and although social networks have decided to take action on the matter to avoid disinformation, now the internet giant has made the decision to suspend the sale and distribution of advertising in Russia.
While it is difficult to predict what the company’s financial losses will be as a result of this action, this action taken by Google shows us how the online world has become a subsidiary battlefield in the face of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The conflict escalates the internet giants
We must not forget that Google and Meta (formerly Facebook) control the majority of digital advertising in the world and in the United States alone, the two technological giants accumulated 64% of advertising spending in 2021.
The decision to remove advertising in Russia comes after Russian internet watchdog Roskomnadzor accused YouTube of running large advertising campaigns to misinform Russians about the invasion of Ukraine. Roskomnadzor had demanded that Google stop showing what it perceived to be false ads about this war, according to a report shared by The Wall Street Journal.
And in response, YouTube began blocking Russian state media channels in Europe, after receiving requests from Ukrainian and European politicians. Google had also banned Russian-controlled media such as RT and Sputnik from buying or selling ads on its platforms. According to Reuters, Russia received between 7 and 32 million dollars (6 and 20 million euros) for advertising on YouTube for two years until December 2018, which can give us an estimate of the blow that this represents for the country.
In addition, the company also offered to provide free services to Ukrainian government websites to protect them from cyber attacks. The advertising ban in Russia will apply to search ads, YouTube, and display marketing.
Twitter and Snapchat also suspend advertising in Russia
This measure goes hand in hand with the decisions made by Twitter and Snapchat, which also decided to pause advertising in Russia. “We are temporarily pausing ads in Ukraine and Russia in order to ensure that critical public safety information is elevated and ads do not detract from it ,” Twitter said. Check out more article on our site.
Russia has since blocked Twitter in the country, in an attempt to stifle information related to the escalating conflict in Ukraine.
For its part , Snapchat stated that it will not show ads in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine, in addition to the fact that Snap stopped all advertising sales in both countries after the invasion in Ukraine, but assured that its application will continue to work in these countries, since it considers which remains an important communication tool, however “it will comply with all sanctions directed at Russian companies and individuals .”