WFLA Update! Advertisers are pulling their dollars from Media General

"Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Religion, and Morality are threatened by homosexuals."
-- from Speechless: Silencing Christians

Take a moment to let WFLA advertisers know where you stand.

No Profit for Prejudice
Hold Media General/WFLA Accountable

Advertisers are pulling their dollars from Media General - parent company of WFLA Ch 8 - in response to the media company's decision to air an hour-long infomercial of hateful anti-gay propaganda on St. Pete's Pride Day this year.

While other stations across the country rejected the hour-long hateful infomercial, Media General/WFLA management made the business decision to take a reported $35,000 while ignoring their responsibility to provide honest, balanced information.

Instead, they argued that disclaimers before and after the program should be sufficient to distance them from the repugnant message.

They also have refused to air a program that might balance out the lies and mitigate the insult of having aired the program on Pride Day 2009, the 40th Anniversary of Stonewall.

Here's what you've done to tell WFLA that they cannot profit from homophobic attacks on our community.

  • Over 200 Equality Florida Members raised "red flags" in front of WFLA and Media General's headquarters as part of a swiftly organized rally.
  • Every major news outlet covered the protest, including a St. Pete Times columnist who noted that Media General/ WFLA would not have broadcast such an assault on any other community.
  • More than 3,000 messages from the community flooded the station ensuring management heard firsthand the injury they have inflicted on their community, their friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers by selling the airwaves to dehumanizing propaganda.

But we're not done yet.

Equality Florida volunteers and staff have been reaching out to Media General's advertisers and asking them to pull their ad dollars in an amount equivalent to the $35,000 they made off the backs of Tampa Bay's LGBT community.

Major advertisers are contacting Media General (parent to WFLA, the Tampa Tribune, and TBO online) as their advertising contracts expire in October letting them know they don't want their company associated with such anti-gay propaganda.

In a letter to the station's management, Chris O'Brien explained why he is pulling his $900 a month advertising account from the media conglomerate. He wrote:

"I regret to inform you that Board of Directors of O'Brien & Rush Enterprises, Inc. d/b/a Vintage Real Estate Services with Christopher T. O'Brien presiding as President and majority stockholder has voted to boycott Media General and any of it's affiliates for airing the bigoted propaganda piece "Silencing Christians" on WFLA.

Our company promotes equality and not hatred, it is our opinion that any relationship with Media General is against the values of our company..."

Now it's your turn!

Click here and join us in calling on Media General's advertisers to hold the media company accountable.(Here's the direct link:http://www.eqfl.org/wfla.html

Sincerely,

Nadine Smith
Executive Director

PS Help support the important work of Equality Florida. For a gift of just $35 or more, we'll send you a FREE "Voice for Equality" t-shirt. Click here.

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