When Kellogg’s announced that it was pulling ads from controversial conservative news site Breitbart earlier this week, management probably imagined they would see a little bit of pushback, but not much.
“Breitbart News’ #DumpKelloggs petition initiative has garnered a whopping 250,000 signatures within 48 hours of Kellogg’s decision to pull its advertising in an attack on the ‘values’ of Breitbart and its 45 million monthly readers,” the website reported.
“Kellogg’s decision was spurred by efforts from left-wing pressure groups, who unleashed a social media campaign to pull companies away from advertising on Breitbart by accusing the news network of racism and antisemitism,” the site explained.
On Tuesday, the company confirmed that it was pulling its advertising from the website.
“We regularly work with our media-buying partners to ensure our ads do not appear on sites that aren’t aligned with our values as a company,” said Kellogg’s Kris Charles, according to USA Today. “In this case, we learned from consumers that ads were placed on Breitbart.com and decided to discontinue advertising there.”
It didn’t take the website long to strike back.
“Breitbart News is the largest platform for pro-family content anywhere on the Internet,” Breitbart News Editor-in-Chief Alexander Marlow said in a statement. “We are fearless advocates for traditional American values, perhaps most important among them is freedom of speech, or our motto ‘more voices, not less.’ For Kellogg’s, an American brand, to blacklist Breitbart News in order to placate left-wing totalitarians is a disgraceful act of cowardice.”
Alas, it’s the latest sign that the media’s war against Breitbart — precipitated, in part, by the selection of the website’s CEO, Steve Bannon, as President-elect Trump’s chief political strategist — wasn’t going as planned.
Perhaps most indicative of just how vicious the battle has become was a CBS story on the Kellogg’s affair that described Breitbart as “an ultraconservative website that has served as a platform for the white nationalist ‘alt-right’ movement.”
What’s most amazing about that article is that a) that’s the first paragraph of the story and b) nowhere in the 16 paragraphs that follow is any evidence given that Breitbart is either “ultraconservative” or “white nationalist.” It’s just stated at the beginning as if the author assumes it to be true and that any right-thinking person will agree.
This is CBS, mind you — the network of Edward R. Murrow, Eric Sevareid and Walter Cronkite. It’s always had a liberal bent, but at least it had some journalistic scruples and a modicum of objectivity.
That was then, this is now: After almost 90 years of existence, the Columbia Broadcasting Service is essentially announcing, with that one lede, that they’re out of the news business. Instead, they’ve gone into smear manufacturing.
Sadly, they aren’t alone. The tagging of Breitbart as “white nationalist” in the mainstream media has been as universal as it has been evidence-proof.
Unfortunately, this seems to backfired somewhat. While we don’t know how it will affect Breitbart in the long term, we know one thing — Kellogg’s certainly isn’t taking it well.
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