36 Advertisers have pulled their support for Glenn Beck

by on August 24, 2009 · 9 comments

in Civil Rights, Media, War and Peace

by James Rucker / HuffingtonPost / August 24, 2009

The campaign calling on Glenn Beck’s advertisers to stop supporting his show continues to pick up steam. Today we’re announcing that sixteen more companies have pledged not to run their ads on Beck’s show:

The new companies distancing themselves from Beck include Airware Inc. (makers of Brez anti-snoring aids), Ancestry.com, AT&T, Blaine Labs Inc., Campbell Soup Company, Clorox, Ditech, The Elations Company, Experian (creator of FreeCreditReport.com), Farmers Insurance Group, Johnson & Johnson (makers of Tylenol), Lowe’s, NutriSystem, Sprint, The UPS Store and Verizon Wireless.

That brings the total to 36 companies that have pulled their support from Beck or given explicit instructions that their ads are not to run on the show. It’s all because more than 160,000 ColorOfChange members connected the dots for Glenn Beck’s advertisers and called on them to stop supporting his show. We want to say thank you to everyone who’s participated in this campaign.

We could also use your help. We brought on additional staff for the campaign in order to drive as many advertisers away as possible. We need to keep them in order to maximize the number of advertisers that drop Beck and to make sure none come back. Anything you can provide will help us get there — whether $10, $20, $50, or more. You can make a contribution to help move the campaign forward, here.

More on how the campaign has been going, and statements from the new companies distancing themselves from Beck, after the jump.

Demanding accountability

After we first launched this campaign, our staff began contacting advertisers to convey the concerns of our members and ask advertisers to stop supporting Beck. Most advertisers decided to do the right thing after hearing about what Beck is doing, and that so many people are concerned about it. Some needed evidence of the level of outrage, so we flooded with comments from people that signed the petition to advertisers. Others needed a picture of what it would look like for their company’s name and brand to be publicly associated with Beck’s rhetoric, so we showed them that, too.

Then there were those that refused to answer our calls or respond to our emails. Red Lobster, Vonage, Clorox, Lowe’s, and Experian fell into that category, and we asked some of our members to give them a call.

By the end of last week, ColorOfChange members made more than 2,800 calls to those five companies, and in just two days, three out of the five — Experian, Clorox, and Lowe’s — pulled their ads. We’re still waiting to hear if Red Lobster or Vonage have changed their minds, and we’ll follow up with them this week.

Here are statements from the advertisers recently distancing themselves from Beck:

“…Sprint ads appeared as part of a broader rotational package of advertising purchased on the Fox Network,” said Kathleen Dunleavy, a Sprint spokesperson, in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “They were not specifically targeted to the Glenn Beck Show nor should they air during this program going forward.”

“…I wanted to let you know that we have taken steps to make sure that [Sprint] will not be advertising on the Glenn Beck show,” Dunleavy later reiterated in a phone message to ColorOfChange.org.

“While we will continue to advertise on news programming, including FOX News, there are certain programs on the FOX Network that do not meet Lowe’s advertising guidelines, including The O’Reilly Factor and Glenn Beck Program,” said Meliski Cox, a spokesperson for Lowe’s, in an email to ColorOfChange.org.

“Per our advertising standards, we don’t advertise in programs that display exploitive sex or violence, treat ethnic, religious, or political groups in a disparaging manner, present facts inaccurately or distort them to blatantly partisan advantage, and treat individuals or groups in a demeaning manner”, said Adam Oberweiser, a spokesperson for Clorox, in a phone message to a ColorOfChange.org member. “We have had limited advertisements on the Glenn Beck Program in the past, however the statements he made during that show would not adhere to our programming standards. Furthermore, we will not be advertising on his program in the future since he did violate our own advertising standards.”

“We have addressed the issue,” said Rich Hallibran, a spokesperson for The UPS Store, in a phone message to ColorOfChange.org. “You will not see our ads on The Glenn Beck TV program.”

“We are no longer advertising on Beck’s program,” said Susan McGowan, Senior Director of Public Relations at NutriSystem, Inc., in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “You can now include us with the other companies that have stopped advertising.”

In a phone conversation with ColorOfChange.org, a spokesperson for AT&T, Daryl Evans, said that their company already had Beck’s program on a ‘Do Not Air’ list for their ads, and if an advertisement was seen during ‘Glenn Beck’ it was placed in error. Evans pledged to call Fox News and correct that error.

In a phone conversation with ColorOfChange.org, Marcy Smith, Director of Advertising for Experian Consumer Direct, confirmed that due to the number and frequency of complaints they have received, they have specifically asked Fox News to pull any of their ads from Glenn Beck’s program and distribute their ads to other shows in the rotation.

“We obviously neither condone nor endorse Mr. Beck’s comments,” said Anthony Sanzio, a Campbell Soup Company spokesman, in a phone conversation with ColorOfChange.org. “We were not pleased when we heard them [the comments] and they certainly don’t reflect the views of this company. We have no advertising currently slated for Mr. Beck’s program and don’t have any plans for the future.”

“In light of the consistency of comments that are made, we don’t plan to advertise there in the future,” Sanzio continued. “We have communicated to our media buying agency that we will not be advertising on that show.”

“Thank you for bringing this to our attention,” said Marc Monseau, Director of Corporate Communications for Johnson & Johnson, in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “These advertisements ran on Glenn Beck as part of a rotational advertising package on Fox News, and I have shared your thoughts with those in our organization responsible for making those rotational buys. We have now informed the network to not include it in our rotation moving forward.”

In a phone conversation with ColorOfChange.org, Jim Gerace, Vice President of Corporate Communications for Verizon Wireless, confirmed that they added Beck’s show to its “Do Not Air” list based on Beck’s controversial track record. “We, on our own, looked at where we’re spending our advertising,” Gerace said. “We made a decision that we don’t want to be advertising on that program for a lot of reasons.”

“We hear your concerns and are no longer advertising on the Glenn Beck show,” said Cindy Thomas, Chief Marketing Officer for Ditech, in a phone message to ColorOfChange.org.

“Ancestry.com buys television advertising on many networks, including Fox News, but does not sponsor any specific content or program,” said Mike Ward, Public Relations Director for Ancestry.com, in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “However, once this issue surfaced, we instructed Fox News to exclude our advertisements from the Glenn Beck program.”

“I wanted to let you know that AirWare Inc., the manufacturer of Brez anti-snoring aids, has instructed its advertising agency to insure that none of our advertisements run on the Glenn Beck show,” said David Green, Director of Public Relations for AirWare, Inc., in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “Because of the way TV advertising is purchased, company executives were not aware in advance that our ads would be running on the show.”

“We have requested that the ads not appear on the Glen [sic] Beck show,” said Dr. Robert Blaine, President and CEO of Blaine Labs, Inc., in an email to ColorOfChange.org. “Our contract is essentially a, ‘fill in where there is empty space’, [sic] and lately, I guess there has been a lot of empty space on the Beck show due to your organization. Our new contract comes up sometime in September and that show will be stricken from the rotation. We do not support [G]lenn [B]eck and do not support his show.”

“What we did last Thursday was our advertising department requested of Fox News Channel that they no longer place a portion of our ads on the Glenn Beck Program [sic],” said a spokesperson for Farmers Insurance Group in a phone message to ColorOfChange.org.

“Just want to let you know that we will no longer be advertising on that [Glenn Beck’s] program,” said David Silver, a spokesperson for The Elations Company.

Moving forward

We are dedicated to moving this effort forward, and we’ll be calling on you to help–whether it’s making focused calls to other advertisers, signing another petition, or doing some other action that will get us closer to exposing what Beck represents and marginalizing his voice.

Today, though, financial support is what we need most. A contribution from you — whether $5, $10, $20, or more — will help us maintain the staff we’ve brought on to help with this effort. We know that for some folks it’s a hard time to give, but if there’s any possibility you can make a donation, please do so. This is a time we can really use your support, and it will help us keep the pressure on.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

jon August 24, 2009 at 9:44 pm

OK, I don’t like this guy. I think he’s a snake-oil-salesman. I think he puts on a big show to get extremists riled up and to serve his own over-blown ego and bank account. However, I think progressives need to be careful when it comes to using the same type of imagery we are ranting against on the other side. Here’s Glenn dressed up to look like Osama Bin laden, America’s #1 symbol of terrorism. Although it may be funny to some of us because we don’t like him, we don’t think Obama made up to look like Adolf Hitler is all that humorous. Besides, all this will do is create more division within our society. Now only “conservative brands” will advertise on Beck’s show, whereas only liberal products will be marketed on MSNBC?? And I don’t think I’m being too soft. The guy looks like a douche. You could make the same point with the same factual story and not have to dress him up in the goofy taliban beard. Just sayin…


annagrace August 24, 2009 at 10:05 pm

And to a large extent, this is a Pyrrhic victory- while the advertisers pulled their ads from Beck’s show, they still continue to appear on Fox. Hey- I know you have to start somewhere, but Beck’s views are reinforced and reiterated on a number of others- Limbaugh, O’Reilly, etc.


Dave Sparling August 24, 2009 at 11:37 pm

I agree with Jon, but then no matter what happens to Beck and the other right wing nuts, they still don’t have the “herding cats” problem that we liberals have. No liberal radio host will ever have thousands of DITTO heads.


Editor August 25, 2009 at 8:57 am

Jon – Beck and others place themselves on the alter as ‘high priests’ – this shows what he would look like if he was in fact some other religio-fanatic, plus it’s funny. What you’re saying is ‘2 wrongs don’t make a right’ – well, we’re not wrong! LOL.

Anna, the boycott was not against FOZ News (maybe it should be) – it was against Glenn Beck. So, this shows a very positive development. C’mon, now, take the good news with the bad.


bodysurferbob August 25, 2009 at 10:04 am

I just watched Keith Olbermann on Glenn Beck – Olbermann called him Mullah Beck due to his latest rants.


Geniezuc August 25, 2009 at 11:42 am

That is very cool! Beck is freakin spooky, and I love Olbermann for not being afraid of any of em. People mention Oreily alot, but Hannity is even more vile! Hit whereever it hurts! As far as “Fixed” news………to go against them… fine…. but I think it’s even better to hit each one in name.
I do remember, when Shepard Smith was sent to cover the Katrina disaster, and literally went off, criticizing the administration, And hollered “Get someone down here to help these people”, and literally cried….I think he got alot of crap for it, but it was so moving, I will never forget him for that. I really commend the folks in this effort, a little sunshile for the day. Anyhow, gotta go I’m out the door for a stroll across the street to “Red Lobster” to tell em why I’m not eating there today! :)


jon August 25, 2009 at 3:28 pm

Not so much that “two wrongs don’t make a right.” I guess I’m just trying to be objective. If I were a moderate republican or independent who came across that picture, I might not see the humor. Instead I might view it as hypocritical. Then I would probably pay less attention to the story and dismiss it as “left-wing radical spin.” I think Becks whacko-facsist beliefs and outright lies speak for themselves. Personally, I think it’s funny, and justified because he is such a bad person(in my opinion). But if we want to do more than just preach to the choir, we might need to try different tactics than the right wing town-hall-tea-bag sect is using. By the way, tea-bagging is for nuts.


619-1502 August 26, 2009 at 9:53 am

Who the heck eats at Red Lobster? Oh…probably the same dumb asses that listen to Beck and think he’s a genius.

I sort of feel sorry for all of those ignorant people who buy into all the fear, hate & lies of air bags like Beck, Limbaugh, O’Reilly, Hannity, Dr. Laura and so on.

Those pundits are not only in love with the sound of their own voices, but they also know exactly how to pander to the sheep who will blindly follow their doctrines of intolerance, while they laugh all the way to the bank. Better than getting a real job, right guys?

On the flip side, it’s sure easy to see why America now ranks #18 in education. Beck’s a freakin’ Mormon for Christ sakes! That cult is just plain WACK!!!


Ron August 26, 2009 at 10:35 am

There actually is more than one boycott effort going on against Fox News. Color of Change is focusing on Beck’s advertisers, as Beck is so clearly an example of the worst of Fox News. But others are working on a broader boycott of ALL of Fox News, targeting ALL of the Fox News advertising. See, for example, at


Fox News is a machine for pushing public discourse in America farther and farther to the right. Fox News, as a whole, is the proper target for the boycott.

It is not simply about whipping up fervor amongst the least educated and impressionable people on the right. It is about year after year of a concerted campaign to make the most outrageous right wing garbage become “mainstream”. That is why progressives must organize and find effective methods to push back. In this country, we today cannot even have a rational public media discussion about the various forms of public health care systems in dozens of other countries, because propaganda machines like Fox News have made it easier for all the other big corporate news outfits to demonize progressive proposals and programs. “Socialized” and “socialism” are not bad words. Medicare is not the devil. Neither are public roads and public libraries.

Progressives must wake up and confront the consicous, programmatic efforts of the Right, to chip away and roll back progressive reforms on every level.



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