Mars pulls YouTube adverts after link to drill rap video

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Mars has withdrawn all its advertising from YouTube after one of its products was featured alongside a rap video linked to violent crime in London.

An advert appeared with a video featuring the Moscow17 collective, whose member Incognito was stabbed to death in south London on Wednesday.

Mars said it was “unacceptable” for its adverts to appear next to such videos and that it would be working with Google to “understand what went wrong”.

Two other males, aged 16 and 31, who also suffered stab injuries in the Camberwell incident, have been arrested on suspicion of murder.

Moscow17 are part of the drill music scene and their videos get hundreds of thousands of views.

Their tracks include lyrics that taunt rival group Zone 2, from Peckham.

A Mars spokeswoman said: “It is unacceptable and disappointing to see one of our brands advertised alongside this video content.

“This clearly breaches our brand safety guidelines and Mars adverts should never run alongside such content.

Siddique Kamara, also known as Incognito, was killed in a stabbing in Camberwell  Mars pulls YouTube adverts after link to drill rap video skynews ingognito siddique kamara 4380220
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Siddique Kamara, also known as Incognito, was killed in a stabbing in Camberwell

“We have taken the action to remove all our online advertising on YouTube and can confirm we are working with Google and our media buying agencies to understand what went wrong.

“Until we have confidence that appropriate safeguards are in place, we will not advertise on YouTube.”

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick has said the videos glamorise violence and has called on social media platforms such as YouTube to remove them.

In an interview earlier this year, Incognito – real name Siddique Kamara – admitted drill music was fuelling violent crime in the capital.

He said: “You see with the crime that’s happening right now, music does influence it. You’ve got to put your hands up and say drill music does influence it.

“But knife crime and gun crime has been going on way before drill music, so if you want to talk about 10 years, 20 years, people were still getting cheffed up (attacked with knifes).”

YouTube has said it is working with police to review videos that may be connected to the stabbing.

A spokeswoman added: “Along with others in the UK, we share the deep concern about this issue and do not want our platform used to incite violence.”



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