Friday, January 28, 2022

Big Oil Is Buying Google Ads That Don't Look Like Ads To Shape Public Perception - Jalopnik

Last updated Thursday, January 6, 2022 08:30 ET , Source: NewsService

Most people know that everything we read on the internet is 100 percent true, which makes Google an arbiter of truth in a discomforting way; you’re only as right as Google says you are. That’s why big oil companies are buying ads that look like legitimate search results. Exxonmobil, Shell and Aramco are among the biggest buyers of these tricky ads, according to the Guardian.

After analyzing Google search results for “78 climate-related terms,” the Guardian found that nearly 20 percent of ads featured on the search engine were placed there by oil companies, and these ads are designed so that search engine users can’t easily tell that they are, in fact, ads.

This greenwashing is especially harmful because people who are looking for information on climate change get these ads mixed in with everything else. The Guardian says that over half of search engine users reported being unable to tell the difference between paid-for ads and normal search results.

According to these deceptive ads, Shell is one of the biggest proponents for reaching net-zero emissions in the near future:

Oil major Shell’s ads – 153 were counted in total – appeared on 86% of searches for “net zero”. Many promoted its pledge to become a net zero company by 2050 and align itself with a 1.5C warming target.

Except that no, Shell isn’t interested in net-zero as much as it is in prolonging the status quo, according to the analysts behind the report:

However, Shell’s net-zero strategy relies heavily on carbon...

Read Full Story: https://jalopnik.com/big-oil-is-buying-google-ads-that-dont-look-like-ads-to-1848310795

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