You know how Donald Trump has been trying to convince us that Steve Bannon is a great guy and his publication, Breitbart, is just a news website that isn’t a haven for white supremacists, white nationalists, and a diverse array of racists, bigots, and people who are fine with racism? Well, that’s going to be just a teensy bit harder now after the publication was banned by an ad vendor for hate speech.
“Breitbart is just a publication,” Trump said in a recent interview with the New York Times. “They are certainly a much more conservative paper, to put it mildly, than the New York Times. But Breitbart really is a news organization that has become quite successful. It’s got readers, and it does cover subjects on the right, but it covers subjects on the left also. It’s a pretty big thing.”
There’s no question that Breitbart is a “big thing,” but that’s not exactly a good thing when it’s something that Bannon himself described Breitbart as the “platform for the alt-right,” a term used to describe white supremacists who took a day off of abusing methamphetamines to throw on a suit and complain about the plight of white people in a seemingly legitimate setting. Nevertheless, Trump says he would never have hired Bannon had he any indicator (like an admission from Bannon that he runs a large platform for white supremacists) that he was alt-right:
“I’ve known Steve Bannon a long time. If I thought he was a racist, or alt-right … I wouldn’t even think about hiring him.”
The Donald says that he intends to get to the bottom of what is energizing the extreme Right (him) and find out why (because he appeals to racists).
Trump’s decision to appoint a white nationalist to a high-level position spurred AppNexus, a major advertising technology provider, to look into what sort of operation Bannon had birthed — and they didn’t like what they found:
AppNexus Inc., a major advertising technology provider, has barred Breitbart News from using its ad-serving tools because the conservative online publisher violated its hate speech rules.
AppNexus scrutinized Breitbart’s website after U.S. President-Elect Donald Trump tapped Steve Bannon, former executive chairman of Breitbart, to be White House chief strategist last week. The digital ad firm decided the publication had breached a policy against content that incites violence, said AppNexus spokesman Joshua Zeitz.
“We did a human audit of Breitbart and determined there were enough articles and headlines that cross that line, using either coded or overt language,” he said.
Bloomberg notes that while Breitbart does not buy ads from AppNexus directly, the ban means that they will not receive ads from the ad server the company runs and this will likely lower the price of ads on the site — which means less money for the modern day Neo-Nazis.
Will more advertising companies follow suit? Only time will tell — but the pressure is certainly on!