Google Bans Ads from Environmental Group

The popular search engine Google is facing accusations of censorship after it refused to carry ads from an environmental group that is protesting a major cruise line’s sewage-treatment methods. The Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit Oceana paid Google to run an ad that read “Help us protect the world’s oceans” when people entered search terms such as “cruise vacation” and “cruise ship.” The ad itself didn’t mention the cruise line by name, but it pointed web surfers to a site that criticized Miami-based Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines for dumping pollutants at sea. Google ran the ad for two days last week, but then banned it, citing a policy against ads that criticize groups or companies. “I am shocked that they will post information about pornography and yet they will censor information about cruise ship pollution,” said Jim Ayers of Oceana.