Epic Games has decided to suspend pre-roll ads on YouTube after commercials were seen on videos within a “network of pedophiles”.
According to a report by Wired, Epic Games pulled pre-roll ads off of YouTube after they were seen on suggestive videos of young girls.
Matt Watson published a video on YouTube showing how the platform’s algorithm was guiding users down a path of inappropriate content featuring young girls.
Youtube’s algorithm offers videos to users with suggested videos that match other content they have seen before, and it can lead YouTube users towards videos that include young females doing gymnastics, playing Twister, or playing in pools.
The comment section for each video was full of people leaving timestamps where viewers can pause the video and see genitalia or nipples.
Wired also found that comments exchanged WhatsApp or Kik information, promising more videos featuring underage girls.
A spokesperson for Epic Games commented to Wired that “through our advertising agency, we have reached out to YouTube to determine actions they’ll take to eliminate this type of content from their service.”
BusinessInsider reached out to YouTube, and a spokesperson said that “Any content – including comments – that endangers minors is abhorrent and we have clear policies prohibiting this on YouTube.”
The spokesperson for YouTube followed up with, “We took immediate action by deleting accounts and channels, reporting illegal activity to authorities and disabling violative comments. There’s more to be done, and we continue to work on improve and catch abuse more quickly.”
Epic Games has yet to respond since YouTube’s comments to BusinessInsider.