Q&A Friday #95: Why Are You Running Ads For Left-Wing Groups?

by John Hawkins | October 10, 2008 10:30 am

Question: “Why is there a PETA ad linked from the right-hand frame of RWN?” — jimb123

Answer: I’ve actually been meaning to write a post about this, so now is as good a time as any to do it.

First off, long time readers of RWN know that if people are willing to pay me to run ads, I’ll happily run their ad whether I agree with their cause or not. That’s not to say that I don’t ever turn anything down — I’ve actually turned down 4-5 ads over the years. I don’t remember each and every one, but two of them I turned down because I thought they were racist and one I remember giving a no-go to because I thought it was homophobic. I’ve also temporarily pulled some ads — and had the advertiser redo them if they wanted them to run on RWN — because I believed they were over-the-line in some fashion or another.

Anyway, not everyone agrees with that approach, but…

#1) I make a living off of this, so I don’t think I can afford to turn down too many ads.

#2) I am a capitalist and I love the idea of getting paid money by people who don’t agree with me. Better the money be spent to support a conservative blogger than to fund some left-wing cause.

#3) Honestly, I don’t think money from groups I don’t agree with is well spent at RWN. There are not a lot of my readers who are going to support some liberal cause just because they run ads on RWN.

That brings me to the PETA ad, as well as the ad for “W,” the T. Boone Pickens Plan, and the tips to fight global warming.

I think PETA is a group of dangerous, animal rights wack jobs. I don’t think the T. Boone Pickens plan is viable (although I have an open mind on the issue and am trying to get an interview with him so he can convince me I am wrong), and I think that global warming alarmism is silly.

So, why are all of these left-wing groups (and T. Boone Pickens) advertising on RWN right now? My best guess is that the left wing groups are all excited right now and flush with cash because of the election, so they have advertising budgets big enough to even reach out to conservative websites.

Now, the PETA ad in particular I think bellies right up to the line. It’s definitely a gross looking ad from a group with a bizarre agenda. However, I don’t think PETA is worse than say, the UN (which I really thought hard about running spots for), and while their ad is grotesque, I don’t think it’s so over-the-line that it shouldn’t be allowed on the blog.

That’s why I am running the PETA ad and the ads from some of the other left-of-center causes that you’re seeing on RWN…

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