Clear Channel under pressure over BNP ads

Outdoor media owner Clear Channel has been deluged with letters calling on it to ditch its deal to carry British National Party European election campaign posters, according to anti-racism campaigners.

Campaign group Searchlight says over 4,000 letters were sent to the company by its supporters over the bank holiday weekend, and it was less than 500 letters short of its 7,000 target this morning (May 28).

The group and its supporters are targeting the media owner for profiting from ‘racist propaganda’ by selling poster sites to the far right party.

It says it has yet to receive a response from Clear Channel, and its next step could be to approach commercial clients about their association with the billboard company if it maintains its silence.

However a Clear Channel spokeswoman says it has responded to each letter sent quoting its policy on political party advertising. She also questions campaigners’ claims over the numbers of complaints, saying it is only aware of having received “less than one hundred” letters.

The policy says the laws governing political advertising “allow
legal and legitimate political parties to engage in campaigning and maintain free speech”, and that it will accept advertising from such parties without “bias or favour, regardless of the company’s own views.”

It adds it is not for clear Channel to “censor” such messages if they are legal, or “ bow to pressure from lobby groups and activists.”

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Tom Fishburne is founder of Marketoon Studios. Follow his work at marketoonist.com or on Twitter @tomfishburne See more of the Marketoonist here

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