Sky News adverts on Arrse

Is anyone else p!ssed off with the Sky News adverts on Arrse constantly giving the messsage below:

Sky Breaking News
2 British soldiers killed in Iraq: Ministry of Defence confirms.

The story link is from March and my heart jumps everytime I see it so god knows what it does to folk with friends out there?
Depends on your location, down here there's an ad for Sky Tower Abu Dhabi and free installation for Sky TV NZ, notwithstanding it would still grip my shit to see promos like that.


Book Reviewer
Okay - just read the other thread links - BIG complaint sent to Rupert Murdoch , marked PRIVATE - others please follow on - this is so wrong, they are using service casualties to openly promote a reason to sign up to SKY!
I have pm'd GCO pointing to the other thread on this subject. I haven't heard anything back as yet. I'm guessing there is not much that the CO's can do about it other thatn complain to the advertising company.

Sky! By Christ! What are 'we' having anything to do with that arch-republican, anti-Monarchist, Australian crook Murdoch? Help!


Book Reviewer
Totally agree - vet the ads please.
I went onto the Sky website, and anything do to with the Army has an Ad saying 1 British soldier killed in Iraq. It's very annoying.
There is no point in pm'ing one of the bosses, they dont read em, it even says so in their sig blocks
Try this
admin @
I agree it is terrible to look at that everytime your on arrse.
It's google that runs the ad, seen it a few times on other sites and it always pisses me off. Everytime I read it and forget it's just a twisted ad campaign I miss a beat at the chance it's one of my mates.
Gaz3447 said:
You can add sites to your GoogleAds account setup that you wish to be excluded from the results people see.
I have contacted GCO (via email!) and he has done just that. - Thanks GCO - Aparently it will take 24ish hours to take effect.

I have also contacted sky news regarding the issue. I will post any reply on here.

Thanks SkiCarver,

I noticed it yesterday, and foolishly clicked on the link thinking it was breaking news. These large companies really don't understand our community do they?
Jimmy_Kranke said:
Thanks SkiCarver,

I noticed it yesterday, and foolishly clicked on the link thinking it was breaking news. These large companies really don't understand our community do they?
They never will.At least we look after our own,no matter what service or branch.(even with the slaagin'!)
No point emailing SKY as it is the Google adsense robot that scans each page for keywords and then shows adverts from the google search engine, Nothing at all SKY can do about it.

How about this Ad on the homepage


I've blocked sky ad so hopefully no more issue. It normally takes a day to respond to the block.
I received this from sky.

names changed.

Dear Ski

Thank you for contacting Sky News.

Your email to the press and publicity department has been passed to me for reply.

The issue you raised was brought to the attention of our advertising department and the ad was immediately removed from the British Army Rumour Service website. It was also taken off similar sites.

Our apologies for any distress which may have been caused.

Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention.

Best wishes

To which I replied;


Thankyou for the reply. I contacted the administrator of the army rumour service website, who agreed to remove the ad. It is good that the ad has been removed 'from similar sites'.

I am still concerned that family and friends of serving soldiers are still going to see the ad on other sites and will be frantically trying to find more information, worrying that maybe their loved one has been killed.

I am sure you will agree that using the deaths of soldiers as a means of getting more internet traffic is distasteful in the extreme. I would like to think that this tactic has not been approved by Sky.

I would therefore appreciate confirmation from you that this form of advert will not be used again, on any website.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Ill post if I get anything more.

I have received this reply from Sky.

Dear Ski

Thank you for your further email.

I have raised the points you made with the team responsible for the ad placement.

This is their reply:

First of all I would like to express regret at any distress or offence caused, and we appreciate this is a thorny issue.

It is never our intention to exploit emotive or sensitive subjects in order to generate traffic. In fact we do have a number of filters in place to avoid this sort of situation – We screen sites deemed inappropriate, offensive, or sensitive. In addition, we manually go through placement reports for sites our ads have appeared on, to add a human element to the screening process.

However due to the nature of this form of advertising, our ads are automatically matched to content deemed appropriate by an automatic algorithm. The function of this is to deliver the most appropriate news articles to the most relevant audience as possible, and it is a system which works well 99.9% of the time. Despite our filters (automatic and manual) however, every now and then something does slip through the net, however, and while we can intervene to pull out inappropriate ads as quickly as possible, we do not have precise control of where our ads are served before the fact.

I hope that helps to explain our strategy and the series of steps we take in the placing of these ads.

Best wishes

Name Removed

Viewers' Editor

Sky News
To which I replied


Thank you for your assistance so far, however I am still concerned as there was no explicit confirmation that this particular ad (and ads like it) will not be used again.

I understand that a particular ad is placed on a site depending on the text contained on the page, however, the ad itself has been written by an individual and approved by others.

If the ad's content were automatic, rather than just their placement, my specific concern would not be valid, as the ad would actually link to a report on an incident. This is definitely not the case.

I hope you are aware that I have tried to do the civilised thing and contacted you (Sky) to raise my concern rather than going straight to the advertising standards authority, which could be very embarrassing to Sky. I am hoping that you (or a suitable Sky representative with sufficient authority) will also 'do the civilised thing' and explicitly state that this style of advert will no longer be used and live up to that agreement.

Many thanks in anticipation,

I have now received this, in my opinion disengenous, reply from Sky.

Dear Ski,

Thank you for your further email.

Your initial concern was over the placing of the ad on the British Army Rumour Service web site.

As a direct result of you bringing this matter to our attention on April 24, the arrse site was specifically excluded from the ad campaign. That remains the case.

I also explained in my email of April 24 that the ad had been taken off similar sites.

I also apologised on Sky’s behalf for any distress which may have been caused.

You have now raised the wider issue of our ad strategy and I have tried to answer your points as fully as I can.

The points you make are not issues unique to content targeting, but are pertinent to any advertising network offering ‘blind networks’ where no visibility is given into the sites which advertising may run.

As far as these networks go, Google have put additional filters in place and allowed extensive reporting into their site network to provide more control over ad placement, and it is possible to explicitly exclude certain sites, as has now been done in this case, to avoid such incidents.

Our view is that these safeguards in general work very well.

We are unable to guarantee that there will not be unforeseen circumstances where our choice of ad placement may appear insensitive. All we can guarantee is that in the event of any complaint, we will remove any offending placements as a matter of urgency. We are able to be very responsive on this.

So I can explicitly confirm that Sky News will no longer serve adverts to the excluded sites.

In addition, the search campaign is currently on pause due to its marketing schedule, hence we are not currently using this strategy to promote any Sky News articles. No decision has been made at this stage whether to revise our marketing strategy in the light of these incidents.

Thank you for taking the time to write to me and for bringing the issue to our attention.

Best wishes

Name Removed,

Viewers' Editor

Sky News
This reply misrepresents my original complaint. I will therefore now take this to the ASA if requested by the assembled rabble on arrse.

let me know.


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