How Yahoo, Amazon, and eBay support hate groups.

December 6, 2005 at 6:38 am | Posted in Hating Hate, Taking Action | 1 Comment

One of the most shocking things to me, when I started looking at online hate groups, is how many of them receive some sort of support from leading internet companies. How, you ask?

Take a look at one hate site: http://www.jihadwatch.com

This is an anti-Islamic website. To establish this, here is one quote by one of their Vice President and Board Member:

“The second important goal is to stop all Moslem migration from Moslem lands, to the U.S., to Canada, to Western Europe. For obvious reasons, Moslems do not migrate to Eastern Europe and Russia. If possible, not only should migration be stopped, but life can be made more difficult, if not by the government, then by private individuals, so that Moslems will be discouraged from remaining. What do I mean? I mean that we, as private citizens, do not have to hire Moslems, we do not have to buy their goods, or make their lives, economically, more rewarding.” [Emphasis from original article] Source

and another, this one from jihadwatch itself:

“the True Believers in Islam, convinced that the Infidels are not merely dreaming of those sheep, but are those very sheep, have started to sharpen their various knives on the implied promise of the future feast.”

This site is supported by some of the leading internet companies through three mechanisms:

1) It uses Amazon’s Honor System to raise funds (Amazon makes a commission)

2) It sells books on its site via the Amazon Associates program (Amazon makes a new sale and pays the organization a commission)

3) It uses TypePad, one of the leading blogging software packages (by SixApart). TypePad is a paid service.
Note that both Amazon and SixApart have policies against this type of activity. To quote Amazon’s:

————————————–
Sites that Do Not Qualify for the Amazon.com Associates Program
include:* Sites that promote sexually explicit material
* Sites that promote violence
* Sites that promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, national origin, physical disability, sexual orientation or age
* Sites that promote illegal activities
* Sites that violate intellectual property rights
——————————————————————–

However, I emailed Amazon roughly 3 weeks ago about this site, and got this response:

“This web site is actually just one of over 900,000 members of the
Amazon.com Associates Program. Associates post links to Amazon.com on
their sites in exchange for a small percentage of the sales that
result when their visitors follow these special links to place an
order with us.

Please note that we do not endorse the point of view of any of our
Associates, nor would we consider ourselves sponsors of their web
sites. In fact, our Associates include prominent web sites
representing all sides of nearly every important political and social
issue of our time.”

In other words, Amazon doesn’t seem to have a problem with hate sites and groups so long as they generate revenue for them. Can you imagine ABC saying the same thing – “Note to all African-Americans: The KKK is just one of our 900,000 advertisers. We do not support cross-burning and lynching, but we are happy to take money from anyone”?
SixApart has a similar policy. Their customer service agent is much more responsive, forwarding the objection to their “Evaluation Committee”. Too soon to say what, if any, action will be taken.
Other examples abound. How about the anti-Semitic page: http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Rhodes/3543/holysee.htm.

The content on this page is cited by Wikipedia as an example of Anti-Semitism. Look around the entire site and you will find more examples.

Note the Yahoo ads on the side of the referenced page? A share of the revenue from those ads supports the author/owner of the site. A share goes to Yahoo. In other words, like Amazon, Yahoo is directly generating revenue from hate sites, and helping to support them.

Another example, to round out the trio in my title, is PayPal (an eBay company). Consider Faith Freedom International, whose site http://www.faithfreedom.org, includes such examples of hate as:

“[Muslims behave] the way animals think and behave. Animals have no understanding of the Golden Rule. They live by the rule of Jungle” and “Let us eradicate Islam … Islam is the cancer of humanity.”

How can you support this organization’s mission of hate and genocide? Yup, I gave it away – donate via PayPal. And – you guessed it – they make a buck every time you do.
PayPal has very explicit rules against this: “You many not use PayPal in the purchase or sale of items or support of organizations that promote hate, violence, or racial intolerance.”

Yesterday, I wrote to PayPal to inform them of this site. I will be checking periodically to see what happens.

I don’t believe for a second that Amazon, eBay or Yahoo do this because they like hate groups. They have, in the past, removed such sites from their network.

But I do believe that they turn a blind eye to it so long as there isn’t pressure (as in the link above).

So let’s start some pressure. I will post an action tip sheet tomorrow.

In the meantime, share names of websites, and examples (QUOTES, NOT FROM RANDOM COMMENTERS, but from articles posted by the owner/representative of the site) via the comments section here.

Everyone can pick their hate site(s) to hate enough to contact Amazon, Yahoo, eBay, Google, SixApart, PajamasMedia – whoever is profiting from hate.

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1 Comment »

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  1. […] Following up on my earlier post about how leading internet companies fund hate groups, no response or action yet from either Amazon or PayPal/eBay. […]


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