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IN TECH: Google Ads, Domain Leadership

By on February 9, 2016

Google is helping to promote the fight against extremism through its own digital advertising network.

Anti-extremist ads partially financed by Google recently began appearing in the U.K. as part of a program that helps nonprofit organizations highlight their causes when people enter certain words into a search engine.

In this instance, Google says it is providing a “handful” of nonprofits with $10,000 apiece to buy such ads. These ads may appear alongside search results when a search request hints at an interest in extremists such as the Islamic State group.

It comes at a time when Google, Facebook, Twitter and other Internet companies are under more pressure to counter the use of online services by the Islamic State and other extremists to recruit supporters.

Google, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., hasn’t decided yet whether to extend its financing of anti-extremist ads to the U.S.

It’s up to each participating nonprofit to decide which search terms should be linked to its ads and how much it’s willing to bid for the right to have the messages appear alongside the results. Google’s financing won’t affect the formula that’s used to determine the rankings of websites in the non-commercial area where its main search results appear.

The funding of anti-extremist ads is part of a grants program that Google started more than a decade ago. In the past, Google has provided funding for nonprofit groups to buy ads promoting animal rescue efforts and the fight against hunger.

The organization that oversees the Internet’s domain name system has tapped a Swedish telecommunications official to become its next leader.

Among other things, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers is in charge of domain name suffixes – the “.com” in Internet addresses. It decides which suffixes are available and who runs their databases. The change in leadership comes as ICANN adds hundreds of new suffixes to the system and as the U.S. government prepares to relinquish veto authority over these matters.

Goran Marby, director-general of the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority, will start in May as ICANN’s president and CEO. He will replace Fadi Chehade, who is stepping down March 15. An ICANN official will serve as an interim CEO.

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