FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 7, 2014
NARAL Pro-Choice America and UltraViolet Ask Yahoo to Remove Deceptive Anti-Choice Ads from Search Engine"Crisis Pregnancy Centers" Misinforming Yahoo Users About Services
Today, UltraViolet has joined NARAL Pro-Choice America to call on Yahoo to follow Google's lead and take down ads that intentionally lie to women facing an unplanned pregnancy. NARAL Pro-Choice America and UltraViolet launched a petition asking Yahoo to remove advertisements for predatory "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs) from their search engine. These ads violate their truth in advertising practices by misrepresenting CPC services and putting women's health at risk. This call to action follows NARAL Pro-Choice America's work with Google to remove a number of identified ads deemed deceptive by the search engine.
"We hope that Yahoo CEO Marissa Meyer will follow Google's example and remove deceptive crisis pregnancy center ads so that women can continue to trust Yahoo to provide the accurate resources we are seeking when we use their platform," said Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. "No search engine should allow themselves to be complicit in such a manipulative campaign to lure women into ideologically driven facilities by masquerading as actual abortion service providers."
"Yahoo is throwing women to the wolves on this issue," said Nita Chaudhary, co-founder of UltraViolet. "Desperate women seeking help are being directed by Yahoo to predatory centers where they will face harassment, aggression, and outright lies about their health and safety, and that is unacceptable. Yahoo should remove these ads immediately."
A congressional committee report and NARAL's own investigations have found that CPCs lie to women about abortion causing an increased risk of breast cancer, future fertility problems, and psychological trauma--all of which are disproven by medical experts including the American Medical Association—in order to convince them to carry their pregnancies to term. They frequently misrepresent the services that they offer in order to trick women into coming in to the center.
Yahoo's advertising policy states that "ad offers and their landing page must be directly relevant to each other" and they "reserve the right to reject or retract, at any time, any advertising deemed to, in Yahoo's sole opinion [b]e misleading, deceptive, false or untrue." The search engine sets the bar at including "all material terms that an ordinary person would require in making an informed decision about whether to purchase the product or service being offered."
Anti-choice groups are notorious for creating deceptive on-line ads. Online for Life, openly admit to seeking to reach "abortion-determined women" and has boasted partnering with 47 CPCs in 21 states.