BuzzFeed certainly has its faults, but on the upside it can occasionally surprise you. Maybe it's the occasional hit of well-written hard news, or a cartoonist giving Disney princesses their viscera back. Or in this case, banning an advertiser for its politics.
That's what just happened:
“Earlier today, BuzzFeed informed the RNC that we would not accept Trump for President ads and that we would be terminating our agreement with them,” [BuzzFeed CEO Jonah] Peretti said. “The Trump campaign is directly opposed to the freedoms of our employees in the United States and around the world and in some cases, such as his proposed ban on international travel for Muslims, would make it impossible for our employees to do their jobs.”
Mr. Peretti went on to compare the ad ban to banning cigarette ads as "hazardous to our health."
But what is this, really? It comes off as principled, but it can also be seen as grandstanding. Banning ads based on the advertiser's politics, sight unseen, could also raise questions about media ethics.
But here's another point of view, expressed by a PR professional named Eliot Harrison in the comments:
If Trump's campaign has shown anything, it's that he hasn't needed advertising. He's getting millions of free advertising through the 100's of articles and stories written about him. THIS article is yet another one that will only serve to embolden his supporters.Hmm... The man has a point. And since I am only adding to the problem here, perhaps I should stop writing now.
What's your take on this?