With the recent news of Bill O’Reilly being dropped by Fox News, there will be much speculation as to whether or not there are any facts behind all the sexual harassment allegations or not. Some might wonder if it was all just a set up coming from the liberals on the left and/or bots on social media. Still others might truly think, because there were multiple past settlements (4 or 5) and $13 million paid out by Fox News, that there actually might be some truth to the matter. It’s really hard to say at this point. It’s probably a little of both, but the Murdoch family didn’t have too much hesitation in letting O’Reilly go, even after setting almost a 15-week record of ratings for O’Reilly’s ‘The Factor’ on Fox News and just recently resigning Bill O’Reilly to new contract.
Let’s face it, ‘The Factor’ was watched by 3-4 million viewers a day. That’s a lot of revenue generated for the Murdochs from ads for the show. In fact, it’s said to be about $178 million in advertisement revenue from 2015. Sure there was news that some businesses, allegedly 50, pulled their ads due to pressure on social media from the liberals on the left, but do we really know how many people truly were pressuring those businesses? Or was it all a set up by one organization and one man?
Most of us have probably seen the episode on ‘Homeland’ where a private company of about 20-30 employees trashed the ‘President-elect’ and made it look like thousands of people across the United States ‘hated her and wanted her gone’. We’ve also seen enough #BlackLivesMatter protests to know that the organizers are nothing more than paid professionals who travel around the country recruiting others to “protest” #DumpTrump or anyone else that’s of the opposition.
Either way, here’s an interesting theory on why Rush survived pressure from advertisers, but O’Reilly didn’t. Enjoy.
H/T Legal Insurrection:
Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News career now swims with the fishes.
The conventional wisdom is that after the NY Times exposed a history of sexual harassment settlements, and two new accusers came forward, advertisers “fled” the show, forcing the hand of News Corp and the Murdochs.
That conventional wisdom is only partially correct — advertisers didn’t flee, they were chased away by the same organized effort as was used against Glenn Beck once upon a time, and Rush Limbaugh in 2012.
Longtime readers will recall my extensive and groundbreaking research into the StopRush operation just after Limbaugh’s comments about Sandra Fluke in 2012, for which he apologized.
I proved then that the operation — at least initially — was a Media Matters astroturfed assault on Limbaugh’s advertiser base, based on a pre-existing plan by Angelo Carusone, then Director of Online Strategy for Media Matters (and now President). Supposedly independent groups coordinated their efforts with Media Matters, and then tried to cover it up.
My research led Limbaugh to activate his personal Twitter account to spread the results of my research. It also earned me threats to interfere in my employment, although those threats never materialized as far as I know. I continued to follow the main group, as it targeted advertisers and eventually imploded from infighting and infiltration. The efforts largely failed at causing any meaningful damage to Limbaugh.
Nonetheless, a small cadre of operatives, who often used multiple proxy accounts to multiply their effect, continued to plug away at harassing Limbaugh advertisers over a variety of issues. That eventually led Limbaugh, through a spokesman, to push back against the operatives, Limbaugh outs #StopRush Twitter operatives.
The pre-existing plan to be used against Limbaugh also existed for O’Reilly, as Carusone admitted in an interview shortly after the Times report on O’Reilly, Here’s Why The Bill O’Reilly Ad Boycott Just Might Work This Time:
“The boycott exploded within days. A cadre of Twitter activists, battle-hardened from ongoing campaigns against the Trumps and Breitbart News, swarmed the initial New York Times story about the sexual harassment allegations and put pressure on advertisers to take a stand. They did—quickly and vocally. Within about 24 hours, over 20 companies— including major players like Allstate, BMW, and T. Rowe Price—pulled their advertising from the O’Reilly Factor and denounced his alleged behaviour.
“So many advertisers are not just removing their ads, but giving comments that they typically avoid, or would avoid. I mean, they’re making value judgments,” says Angelo Carusone, president of liberal watchdog organization Media Matters for America. That Carusone was caught off guard shows how unexpected the reaction was, as he’s long been planning for such a day. “I had the @StopOReilly [Twitter] account for seven years, and I just sat on it,” he says.
The justification for these tactics against O’Reilly was that it was conduct at issue, not politics:
“[Carusone] points out that O’Reilly’s issue is not one of free speech but rather of behavior. The charges against him, other Fox colleagues, and Fox itself are serious and mounting. “Sexual harassment is a really big fucking problem in this country,” says Carusone. “I do think it matters if you have corporate leaders standing up and saying, hey, this is an issue that we think is a super-big third rail, and so even if you give a whiff of this, we’re not going to go anywhere near it.”
But of course, for Carusone and Media Matters, it was all about politics, and part of a plan hatched years ago, as we wrote about in 2011, Media Matters Plans “Guerrilla Warfare and Sabotage” on Fox News And Conservative Websites.
Despite O’Reilly being gone, Carusone plans on continuing the effort against Fox News, Statement Of Angelo Carusone As Bill O’Reilly Exits Fox News:
“Fox News was forced to act. They had years to address serial sexual harassment at Fox News. They didn’t; they actually enabled it. So, individuals and groups took action to educate advertisers. Advertisers fled because they immediately recognized what Fox News has ignored for over a decade: that serial sexual harassment is not only wrong, but bad for business.”
“Without advertisers, Bill O’Reilly’s show was no longer commercially viable. Fox News had no choice but to fire O’Reilly. Accountability came from the outside, not from within. Fox News deserves no accolades, only scorn for the industrial scale harassment they have forced their employees to endure.
“The open question is what Fox News will do about the epidemic of sexual harassment at Fox News that extends well beyond O’Reilly as it seems to be in-part facilitated by its current co-president Bill Shine. Shine reportedly retaliated against women that came forward with reports against former Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes as well as those that came forward against Bill O’Reilly. Aside from mistreating staff, Shine put shareholders and advertisers at risk by resigning a contract with O’Reilly just a few weeks ago despite knowing all the allegations.
“If Fox News wants to signal that they’re serious about addressing sexual harassment, they’ll fire Bill Shine too. If not, then staff, advertisers and shareholders should beware.”
So why did the pressuring of advertisers work with O’Reilly, but fail with Limbaugh?
So why did the pressuring of advertisers work with O’Reilly, but fail with Limbaugh?
- It was about conduct (O’Reilly) versus words (Limbaugh) – there were multiple alleged instances with Bill over time, with Limbaugh, it was just words.
- It was about Company Man (O’Reilly) versus The Company (Limbaugh). Bill was part of Fox News, Rush was his OWN company and brand. O’Reilly was expendable and replaceable. Rush – different story.
- It was about Centralized Advertising (O’Reilly) versus Dispersed Advertising (Limbaugh). The Factor was a one hour show on one news station. Limbaugh is on hundreds of stations with lots of local advertisers. O’Reilly had a set number of advertisers. Rush – whole different story.
- It was about Non-ideological (O’Reilly) versus Ideological (Limbaugh) Advertisers. O’Reilly’s national advertisers, who were non-ideological name brands. Corporate advertisers hate controversy and avoid it at all costs.
- It was about No Apology (O’Reilly) versus An Apology (Limbaugh). Plain and simple. Limbaugh apologized for his words (“slut” and “prostitute”) used against Georgetown University law student, Sandra Fluke. We’re all human. We all make mistakes. But O’Reilly never apologized, and the liberals just spun the issue out of control.
As long as Media Matters exists, there will be a war against conservative media sites. The George Soros funded Media Matters will do what it can to ‘destroy any and all conservative media outlets’ and they will not stop until they have succeeded. They’ve worked against Beck, Limbaugh and now O’Reilly and there are still plenty more to come. Conservatives like Mark Levin and Mark Steyn – Media Matters is just biting at the bit for these guys! In addition, Media Matters supported and funded the #DumpTrump campaign. It all comes back to follow the money. The money trail leads back to George Soros.
Advertisers like Mercedes, BMW, Allstate, Coldwell Banker, Pfizer, CNN Live – and others all donated to the Clinton Foundation as well. So it looks like these businesses see no problem supporting a former President, Bill Clinton who was found guilty of rape, but when it comes to a conservative on a somewhat conservative show and the top-rated cable news show on T.V. – ‘The Factor’ on Fox News – forget about it! Talk about liberal hypocrites!
Again, you only have to put all the pieces together. John Podesta worked for the Clintons and supported Center for American Progess. Center for American Progress is tied to New Democrat Network, MoveOn.org, Democracy Alliance, Tides Foundation and Service Employees Union (SEIU)…all tied back to our dear old Clinton friend and socialist buddy, George Soros. Making any sense yet?
It all comes back to the Constitution – 1st Amendment – Right to Free Speech! The liberals just don’t want your free speech to disagree with theirs…especially if you have a huge conservative audience. They will find you and they will try to take you down. Who’s next? Sean Hannity?
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