Monday, August 24, 2009

Advertisers Run from Glenn Beck Show

Fox talk show host Glenn Beck, a right wing extremist in many ways, is losing major advertisers on Fox. Beck's one of the right wing political pundits who's been heating up the health care reform battle with crazy rhetoric like health care is Obama's way to make reparations to black people. The group credited with successfully chasing big advertisers from Beck's show s is a grassroots social justice organization that uses the Web to spark Black America to political action. It was founded by James Rucker, a very cool dude. I've got a soft spot for James. He started Color of Change because of the injustice he saw during Hurricane Katrina. The group's server may be overloaded at the moment because when I visited it a few minutes ago, half the images were missing.

Rucker's been writing about the success of the action against Glenn Beck at the Huffington Post, Jack and Jill Politics, The Daily Kos, and FiredogLake: Walmart, CVS, Best Buy Ditch Glenn Beck (Plus Five More Companies).
Eight more Glenn Beck advertisers, including Wal-Mart -- the world's largest retailer -- have confirmed to that they pulled their ads from the controversial Fox News Channel broadcaster's eponymous show. Allergan (maker of Restasis), Ally Bank (a unit of GMAC Financial Services), Best Buy, Broadview Security, CVS, Re-Bath, Travelocity and Wal-Mart join the dozen other companies who previously distanced themselves from Beck.

Twenty companies have pulled their ads from Beck's show in just the last two weeks. The moves come after the Fox News host called President Obama a "racist" who "has a deep-seated hatred for white people" during an appearance on Fox & Friends. Previous companies who pulled their ads include ConAgra, GEICO,, Men's Wearhouse, Procter & Gamble, Progressive Insurance, RadioShack, Roche, SC Johnson, Sanofi-Aventis, Sargento, and State Farm Insurance.

"We are heartened to see so many corporate citizens step up in support of our campaign against Glenn Beck," said James Rucker, executive director of "Their action sends a clear a message to Glenn Beck: Broadcasters shouldn't abuse the privilege they enjoy by spewing dangerous and racially charged hate language over the air. No matter their political affiliation, hate language doesn't belong in our national dialogue." (COC press release)
Some of the companies themselves back up his statement that they no longer want to advertise on Glenn Beck.

According to the Asociated Press, an organization which bloggers more or less should avoid quoting, companies such Wal-Mart, Clorox, CVS Caremark and Sprint are saying "no" not only to Beck but perhaps other political shows as well, both progressive and conservative, because they don't want the public heat that rises from what Clorox calls "inflammatory speech."

The AP story suggests shows such as the Keith Olberman show and the Rachel Maddow show may also see fewer advertising dollars from big name companies. These are some of the top shows on television now, drawing large audiences.

With the loss of his larger advertisers, look for more ads on Beck's show about products that enhance "that certain part of the male body." I'm sure some people will say Beck's freedom of speech is being hindered here, which is what they said when advertisers pulled out of the Don Imus show two years ago. However, companies rarely consider only who has the highest ratings when selecting where to put their advertising dollars. They also consider how advertising on certain shows reflects corporate image.

If it was all based on "number of eyeballs," you'd see Clorox and Wal-Mart with big ads on porn sites.


Kate Burton said...

Wow, that last sentence just about sums it up doesn't it. I'm thrilled with the success of the ad blitz.

RiPPa said...


Glenn Beck deserves all of this, and he like many other "journalists" should never forget that there are consequences to their irresponsible actions. More of this needs to happen, and it's great that a grassroots organization was 3effective in leading this effort.

Somehow I don't quite fall for what Clorox and Walmart (of all companies) are saying about pulling back all-together from politicaly charged shows.

le0pard13 said...

Yes! Thanks for the post, Nordette.