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September 26, 2007

Is All Publicity Good Publicity?

The viciously RightWing Center For Union Facts is currently advertising on my sidebar. As always, I don't screen my advertisers for opinion because I don't endorse any of them. But though I'm happy to take the Center's cash, it's worth pointing out that they're a business front group that exists for no purpose save to smear and attack workers trying to organize for better wages, benefits, and treatment. Pretty loathsome folks. More on them here

September 26, 2007 | Permalink


i commend your candor, but i have a personal vendetta against blogads - not because of their content, but because their ads often contain scripts which crash my browser. sometimes all it takes is one faulty blogad to render one's website completely inaccessible. the business model isn't that bad per se, but they have to tighten up their development end.

Posted by: r@d@r | Sep 26, 2007 2:08:05 PM

Can you imagine CNN introducing an ad break by saying this company or industry lobbying group that you about to hear about is full of shit? Media life would surely be more interesting.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Sep 26, 2007 2:38:16 PM

As a utilitarian, I heartily approve of taking Evil's money and slapping them in the face.

Posted by: Neil the Ethical Werewolf | Sep 26, 2007 2:58:23 PM

Yeah, what r@d@r said.

I pretty much can't read Atrios anymore with Firefox because it so regularly freezes up the browser.

Posted by: Misplaced Patriot | Sep 26, 2007 3:07:50 PM

"capitalist corner" is pretty good, but how about a proviso saying you don't endorse any of the groups mentioned... its just that this group is the epitome of capitalist evil -- pooling money of the rich to make those fighting them look bad.

Posted by: eli | Sep 26, 2007 3:18:16 PM

I wonder if we can get some right-wing bloggers to set up a "Communist Corner" where they plead for government funding. Apparently it worked for Armstrong Williams.

Posted by: Neil the Ethical Werewolf | Sep 26, 2007 3:28:13 PM

their ads often contain scripts which crash my browser.

Get the NoScript plugin for Firefox. I don't even see BlogAds anymore.

Posted by: Antid Oto | Sep 26, 2007 3:41:47 PM

Hello dear friend. I am a Persian citizen and it is the first time that I visited your blog. As I invite you to take a visit of my blog, let's inofrm you about a doubtless reality. Ahmadinejad is not the symbol of Iran as Bush is not the symbol of US. do you want the global opinions know your country and call it with Bush, the great terrorist who sent more than 200,000 militants to Iraq and killed the Iraqi people? It is the same for Iran. Maybe Ahmadinejad is the president now, but he is not the symbol of Iran... beleive this. Pasargadae, Persepolis and Cyrus the great are Iranian symbols, if you beleive. The glorious 7000 years old civilization and peaceful kings with constructive poeple, these are real Iranians and we are trying to show this to the world although our politicians are doing worse...

Posted by: Kourosh Ziabari | Sep 26, 2007 4:07:38 PM

That's one thing I've never gotten about politicians returning donations from unpopular donors (aside from the obvious publicity issue). Wouldn't the money be better off in your own hands than back in the hands of the evildoers?

Posted by: George Tenet Fangirl | Sep 26, 2007 4:43:55 PM

I fully support taking every dollar that the Center for Union Facts wants to give away, as it's one less dollar put towards their slime.

American Rights at Work profiled the Center for Union Facts, as well as its loathsome leader, Rick Berman, who uses this and other 'nonprofits' to funnel money to his PR fiorm.

Posted by: Michael | Sep 26, 2007 4:50:07 PM

"I pretty much can't read Atrios anymore"

And the problem is?

Posted by: ostap | Sep 26, 2007 5:34:45 PM

So do you take more of their money if we click on the link a whole bunch of times? Can anyone write a program to click on the link all night while we sleep?

Posted by: j | Sep 26, 2007 5:52:49 PM

My only problem is with Open Left, which freezes my browser, sometimes so badly that I have to close it down and restart, probably because they have several dozen YouTube videos on every page. I don't understand the point of YouTube videos in the sidebar.

Posted by: KCinDC | Sep 26, 2007 6:18:56 PM

I have searched and can't find out how much the UAW wage rates are.

Anyone know?

Posted by: El Viajero | Sep 26, 2007 6:50:51 PM

The top pay for a GM hourly employee is $27 an hour, but with benefits and future health care costs GM estimates that hour of work costs the company $73.73.

Almost 74 bux and hour including benefits for a workforce that is largely not college educated.

Posted by: El Viajero | Sep 26, 2007 6:59:35 PM

When CEO Rick Wagoner has a benefits plan that will pay him $4.6 million a year after he retires, even if he runs the company into bankruptcy, it's not the people at the bottom who are the most egregious cases.

Posted by: Neil the Ethical Werewolf | Sep 26, 2007 7:05:21 PM

Neil 2:58 -- this presumes that you do them more harm (and hence generate more utils) by taking the money than they get benefit (and hence reduce utils) via the ad space. you could slap them without taking their money. which is to say, that the moral decision to tkae their money turns entirely on whether their ads work. they think they do.

Posted by: RW | Sep 26, 2007 7:16:09 PM

I haven't dealt with a frozen browser in ages. The latest version of firefox works with WindowsXP fine, so I've never had any problem with the ads.

Posted by: Tyro | Sep 26, 2007 7:40:56 PM

they think they do.

No, the think they might, and is thus worth the gamble of experimenting with online ads in the hope that they realize a return.

A lot of this is people tossing money around in the hopes of getting their name out there in the hopes something might come of it.

Posted by: Tyro | Sep 26, 2007 7:43:26 PM


Ezra gets some pennies, and the bad guys lose some. WIN WIN!

Posted by: Brian | Sep 26, 2007 8:54:42 PM

The douchebag comment of the day:

"I'm happy to take the Center's cash"

Posted by: Tony | Sep 26, 2007 9:02:30 PM


As someone who makes online media buys for a living, you have to understand: for the RightWing Center For Union Facts to have clicked on Ezra's blog as an ad include (and trust me, they HAD to, in some capacity) they are either lazy or dumb or both.

If they have an ad showing up here, let's reward them for their stupidity.

Posted by: Brian | Sep 26, 2007 10:28:30 PM

Clicking through more won't do anything. CUF pays a weekly rate through the blogads service, and a higher click through rate encourages them to run more ads. I'd rather not see a slew of anti-union ads on progressive websites, so let's just let them do their experiment and go away.

Posted by: michael | Sep 26, 2007 10:43:48 PM

And I want to clarify to that Ezra maintains his editorial policy and I support bloggers getting any revenue they want to receive. But CUF's strategy is to poke, prod, and irritate - this is part and parcel to what they do.

Posted by: michael | Sep 26, 2007 10:50:10 PM

Wrong, Michael. Plain wrong. Are you saying when you do an ad-buy on a given blog or even a group of blogs you don't follow up and see the ROI? Come on. You're saying they do this for kicks? Someone made a lazy category buy... at best we can get them to re-up cause they're lazy... at worst, someone gets a black eye because it's discovered this was a bad buy on an unfriendly blog.

Posted by: Brian | Sep 27, 2007 12:00:45 AM

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