Children exposed to horror film ads on YouTube

Latest news

    A scared child using a laptopImage copyright Getty Images
    Image caption Three parents contacted the ASA to say their children had been distressed by the ads

    Children were left distressed after seeing ads for a horror film on YouTube, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has revealed.

    Three parents contacted the ASA after their children saw ads for Insidious: The Last Key – rated 15 in the UK.

    One ad for the film was shown before videos of songs from Frozen, instructions for building a Lego fire station and a clip from the cartoon PJ Masks.

    The ASA has upheld the complaints.

    In a second ad, the ASA said a young woman was seen “lying on a floor immobile, bloodied and distressed while a humanoid creature crept towards her and then probed at her with claw-like fingers and pierced her skin”.

    Screaming women

    Further horror-themed imagery followed, including a sequence of women screaming.

    This ad played before two videos of Minecraft, a game popular with children.

    Sony Pictures and Sony-owned Columbia Pictures, which promoted the film, told the ASA they had excluded unknown audiences and children from their targeting.

    The BBC understands that a follow-up probe by Sony indicated that YouTube’s content categorising algorithms were at fault.

    The Google-owned streaming service, however, said that advertisers were responsible for own their campaigns.

    The video site added the ads had not appeared on YouTube Kids, an app aimed specifically at children that offers a filtered selection of YouTube content.

    “We considered the ads were unsuitable for children because they were excessively frightening and shocking, and were likely to cause fear and distress,” the ASA said in its ruling.

    The ASA also received three complaints from adults who found the ads unduly distressing. And it noted that the ads had appeared before unrelated content, with no warning and could not be skipped until five seconds had elapsed.

    The regulator has told Sony Pictures to ensure that future ads are appropriately targeted.

    The firm declined to comment.

    View the original article: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-44448936

    But the BBC understands that it is now limiting its ads for mature content to a pre-vetted list of safe YouTube channels.

    In the same category are

    Amazon’s one-day delivery ad banned as ‘misleading’ Image copyright Getty Images Amazon's one-day delivery ad for Prime members has been banned as misleading.The UK advertising regulator said it had r...
    The Papers: Praise for terror police and cleared Stokes By BBC News Staff Image copyright Daily Mirror Image caption "They will never win" declares the Daily Mirror on its front page as it responds to...
    Champions League: Sergio Ramos criticises Jurgen Klopp in final row Salah was substituted in the first half of the Champions League final after a challenge from RamosReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has told Liverpool...
    Italy bridge: Bridge rescuers search into the night in Genoa Image copyright EPA Image caption Floodlights are guiding the night search Rescuers in the northwest Italian city of Genoa are searching into the ...
    T20 Blast: Tymal Mills hat-trick as Sussex Sharks beat Glamorgan Watch a sensational finish to Sussex Sharks' 98-run victory over Glamorgan as Tymal Mills takes a hat-trick and the visitors lose five wickets for jus...
    Pennsylvania priests ‘abused thousands of children’ Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Archbishop Donald Wuerl sent a letter to Pennsylvania priests warning them of "profoundly disturbing" de...

    Leave a comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.