At least two major organizations paused advertising on X after their ads appeared on an avowedly pro-Hitler account, according to a report.
Gilead Sciences, the California-based pharmaceutical giant, and NCTA — The Internet & Television Association, a trade association representing telecommunications companies, told CNN on Wednesday that they halted their ads on X.
The move was made after the liberal watchdog group Media Matters for America reported that several companies’ ads had appeared on an X profile titled “New American Union,” which included memes and content sympathetic to Hitler and the Nazis.
But a source familiar with the situation told The Post that the two brands lifted their pause and resumed advertising on the platform formerly known as Twitter after they received an explanation from the social media company.
NCTA disputed the source’s contention and said that its pause remained in effect as of Thursday afternoon.
The “New American Union” account has been suspended, according to the source.
Before its suspension, Media Matters listed several brand names whose ads appeared on the profile, including the Atlanta Falcons, Major League Baseball, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times Company-owned sports news site The Athletic, Office Depot, Samsung, Gallup, and USA Today.
“We take the responsible placement of NCTA ads very seriously and are concerned that our post about the future of broadband technology appeared next to this highly disturbing content,” NCTA spokesperson Brian Dietz told The Post.
“Brand safety will remain an utmost priority for NCTA, which means suspending advertising on Twitter/X for the foreseeable future and heavily limiting NCTA’s organic presence on the platform.”
The Post has sought comment from Gilead.
X told The Post that the companies whose ads appeared on the timeline of “New American Union” were following individual users who happened to migrate to the pro-Nazi account.
“No brand is specifically asking to be a part of that site,” X told The Post. “That’s not how it works.”
“If you look at targeting, brands follow people,” the company said.
“So if people go to a specific profile and they’re in that brand’s target, they’re following the people,” according to the company.”
X told The Post that “New American Union” boasted few followers and had “no reach, no virality in general” — so much so that the “ad impressions that did run were so minuscule.”
X said that it will be “evaluating if there will be changes and tweaks to their current control settings for advertisers.”
X under new CEO Linda Yaccarino, who was given a mandate by her boss, Elon Musk, to win back advertisers who fled the platform following the tech mogul’s $44 billion acquisition of what was then Twitter last year, has instituted a content moderation policy under the headline “freedom of speech, not reach.”
The company told The Post that content posted to X that is “awful but lawful” is given a “label on the back end.”
“It gets de-amplified and de-monetized,” the company told The Post.