Here’s an update on my recent heavily-Dugg post: “The truth-telling ad ABC won’t let you see — and what you can do about it.”
First, as of today, more than 200,000 people have sent ABC an email. So thank you to everybody who sent them an e-mail or Dugg this post and drew attention to it — and to the many other bloggers who wrote about this.
Second, ABC’s absurd actions have come to the attention of one of the media’s most prestigious watchdogs. What their headline “ABC Declines Renewable Power Ad” lacks in actual head-smackiness, their coverage makes up in credibility. ABC can easily ignore bloggers, but not CJR. ABC was also critiqued by the UK Guardian, with a better headline, “ABC deems Gore climate change advert too ‘controversial’ for TV.”
Third, ABC has offered an explanation for their
hypocrisy action or, more precisely, two explanations. The Alliance for Climate Protection says that ABC objected to this fleeting image:
Why? ABC said:
Per our Guidelines, national buildings may be used in advertising provided the depictions are incidental to the advertiser’s promotion of the product or service. Given the messages and themes of this commercial, the image of the Capital (sic) building is not incidental to this advertising. Please replace the image with one that is not of another national building or monument. Thank you.
While running ads calling for conservation and depicting happy children and unspoiled nature, Chevron was simultaneously expanding its operations in the tar sands of Alberta, Canada and oil fields of the Niger Delta, and lobbying to lift the offshore drilling moratorium.
Maybe ABC realized the inanity of their original argument because “network spokeswoman Julie Hoover told the Guardian“:
All of our advertising is reviewed on a case-by-case basis, and the context of this particular ad was determined not to be acceptable per our policy on controversial issue advertising.
I suppose the “we’re arbitrary” defense is much better than the “we’re legally inane” defense.
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