Fresh off a failed confrontation with Florida’s Gov. Ron DeSantis over parental rights, Disney now finds itself being attacked by Democrats because the company refuses to run abortion and gun control ads on Hulu.
In essence, the damaged brand of Disney is just not politically radical enough for the left.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and Democratic Governors Association released a joint statement via The Washington Post on Monday, accusing Disney of censoring political ads.
Hulu, which is one of multiple streaming services owned by Disney, is nixing political ads aimed at taking on conservative views over abortion or gun rights. The Democratic groups sought to buy ad space with a number of Disney-owned networks, including Hulu, but the streamer never aired them.
This is a selling point for me! If you have to get your political or health information through commercials, you’re already screwed. I pay extra for Hulu to NOT see ads! Not seeing political ads, huge bonus. https://t.co/mq4UlnYq1I
— Desi (@DesiDlnek) July 26, 2022
I personally don’t want to see political ads. Ever. Not on Hulu. Not on Youtube. Not on social media. Not in my mailbox. NOWHERE.
If I want to see what you have to say, I can seek it out.
Otherwise, I should have the freedom to not have your views forced on me.
— William Garrison Spooner (@wmWillBeHeard) July 26, 2022
The ads aired July 15 on a Disney-affiliated ABC affiliate in Philadelphia and the company’s cable sports channel ESPN. They also aired on Facebook, YouTube, Roku, and NBC/Universal.
The executive directors of the three Democratic groups, Christie Roberts, Tim Persico, and Noam Lee, issued a scathing statement on the refusal by Hulu.
“Hulu’s censorship of the truth is outrageous, offensive, and another step down a dangerous path for our country. Voters have the right to know the facts about MAGA Republicans’ agenda on issues like abortion — and Hulu is doing a huge disservice to the American people by blocking voters from learning the truth about the GOP record or denying these issues from even being discussed,” the outraged woke groups proclaimed.
@hulu I might pay extra every month now. Thank you for not having these crappy and negative ads. Ignore the naysayers. Don't #BoycottHulu pic.twitter.com/45Et6lDLA7
— IAmApril (@AprilElevenOne1) July 26, 2022
It appears that Hulu wants to steer clear of controversial issues and instead actually entertain its viewers rather than inflict political propaganda on them.
“To not discuss these topics in my campaign ad is to not address the most important issues facing the United States. Your ban on mobilization messaging has a perverse effect on Democracy,” Suraj Patel, a Democratic congressional candidate in New York, wrote in a letter that was addressed to Disney CEO Bob Chapek and Hulu President Joe Earley.
His campaign ad was allowed to run after Patel replaced footage of the January 6 Capitol riot with Donald Trump and changed “climate change” to “democracy,” according to The Washington Post.
A Hulu representative reportedly told Patel that his campaign ad on abortion, gun control, and climate change was too “sensitive.”
Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux (D-GA) also said in May that Hulu rejected an ad from her that addressed her pro-choice stance following the Supreme Court overturning the landmark abortion case Roe vs. Wade.
(Video Credit: Carolyn Bourdeaux)
“Hulu should drop this dangerous and outrageous ban on pro-choice advertising,” Bourdeaux declared at the time.
Hulu’s advertiser guidelines state that it will refuse any ad that “takes a position on a controversial issue of public importance (e.g. social issues).”
Disney will roll out an ad-supported version of its streaming service Disney+ later this year that will prohibit political ads entirely, according to Variety.
Unlike broadcast television networks, Hulu doesn’t have to provide politicians with equal access under the Communications Act of 1934, according to The Verge.
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