Report: Google VP Intervened on Christian Video that Offended Employees
A recent report from the Daily Caller alleges that a Google VP stepped in to block a Christian video on gay marriage from running on the tech giant’s Youtube advertising platform.
The Daily Caller reports that Google banned a video which stated that the church welcomes homosexuals but encourages them to follow Christian teachings on same-sex marriage. Internal communications show that the video was banned from Google’s advertising platform on YouTube after a Google VP agreed that the video constituted a “microaggression” and shouldn’t be allowed.
The Daily Caller discusses the internal reaction to the video on Google’s employee message boards:
The video was flagged in June 2018 in an internal listserv, “Yes at Google,” which is run by Google’s human resources department, according to those communications and other internal documents, which a source shared with TheDCNF on the condition of anonymity.
The listserv has more than 30,000 members and is devoted to policing “microaggressions” and “micro-corrections” within the company, according to its official internal description.
The internal backlash to the video grew large enough to merit a response from a Google vice president, who said the video would no longer be eligible to run as an advertisement, the human resources team announced to the listserv.
The video in question was produced by Christian radio host Michael L. Brown who has previously spoken out against the “homo-hatred” and “ugly rhetoric” from some Christian groups such as the Westboro Baptist Church. In the video, Brown states that same-sex relationships are “like other sins, but one that Jesus died for.” Brown states that homosexuals can be Christian but notes that it has long been a Christian belief that sex only takes place in the marriage of a male and female.
The Daily Caller notes that there was almost an immediate issue with the video raised by Google staff:
“I cannot see how this can be allowed when the specific idea of LGBT videos is to allow the creators to feel free to share their content and be comfortable that anti-LGBT advertisers would not be attached to their content,” the employee wrote. “This seems very counter to our mission, specifically around PRIDE 2018 timeframe.”
Google’s vice president for product management and ads, Vishal Sharma, agreed that the video was too offensive to air as an advertisement.
“Thank you for raising this very important issue. It means a lot to me personally and those of us working on this across the Ads and YouTube teams. YouTube is an open platform and we support the free expression of creators with a wide range of views,” Sharma wrote in his response, which was included in the listserv.
“But we don’t allow advertising that disparages people based on who they are – including their sexual orientation – and we remove ads that violate this basic principle,” Sharma continued.
“After careful and multiple reviews over the course of a few days, our teams decided to remove the ad in question here as it violates our policy. We’ve communicated this to the advertiser and have been in touch with creators who have been actively engaged on this issue,” Sharma added, again expressing his gratitude for the internal feedback.
Breitbart News has covered other complaints raised by Google staff — such as when employees had a meltdown over the use of the word “family” during a discussion about a Google product aimed at children. Breitbart News also reported in December of 2018 that internal emails appeared to show Google targeting Breitbart News’ advertising revenue specifically. A Google spokesperson later claimed that despite the internal discussion, no modifications were made to Google search results for political purposes.