Google and Facebook Are Responsible for Extremist Content: Sir Martin Sorrell

WPP Group CEO: Google, Facebook are media, responsible for content

WPP Group CEO Sir Martin Sorrell on the role of tech companies in the fight against terrorism online.

Alphabet (GOOGL) subsidiary Google and Facebook (FB) are under pressure from governments around the world as well as companies like Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T) to do more to filter extremist content.

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Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP Group, which offers communication and media management services, said the two tech titans must be held accountable.

Sorrell said the heart of the matter “is the fact that Google and Facebook are media companies… and they have to take responsibility for the content they have online.”

Sorrell explained to the FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo that in addition to curated content, Google has user-generated content, which is a “difficult thing to control.”

Google and Facebook are liable for solving the problems technologically and through human resources, he said, while also noting that the WPP Group is working with Google to see what can be done.

“The problem that Google and that Facebook has is that they’ve been very successful. They control 75% of digital advertising, and to put it into perspective, that’s 30% of worldwide advertising,” he said. “This is the penalty in a way, of success. They have the margins… resources…[and] the profitability to do something about it.”

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He noted that they are also facing pressure from the German and Vietnamese governments.

“The German government threatened a $50 million fine for each breach of fake news and the Vietnamese government hauled in about 100 people…This was more to do with political content – anti-government or government critical content…So you’re getting into the area of censorship which is a very difficult thing to monitor and it’s judgmental.”

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