Salon's Costly, Controversial Content

In addition to the troubling financial news, Salon’s recent quarterly report including some disconcerting statements claiming that advocacy groups that disagreed with content on Salon had targeted Salon’s advertisers to persuade them to pull their ads. In a section titled, “THE CONTROVERSIAL CONTENT OF SALON’S WEBSITES MAY LIMIT ITS REVENUES,” the company wrote: “Many of our websites contain, and will continue to contain, content that is politically and culturally controversial. As a result of this content, current and potential advertisers and Salon Premium subscribers may refuse to do business with Salon. Salon’s outspoken stance on political issues has and may continue to result in negative reactions from some users, commentators and other media outlets. From time to time, certain advocacy groups have successfully targeted Salon’s advertisers in a attempt to persuade such advertisers to cease doing business with Salon. These efforts may be a material impediment to Salon’s ability to grow and maintain advertising revenue.” If true, this means that groups unhappy with Salon’s content may have contributed to the company’s cutbacks and possible demise, stanching its freedom of speech.

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