KDFC/San Francisco Pulls Controversial Ad
March 16, 2007 at 11:48 AM (PT)
THE SAN FRANCISCO EXAMINER reports a 30-second ad for a book was taken off the air WEDNESDAY by ENTERCOM Classical KDFC/SAN FRANCISCO when it drew complaints from listeners after airing a few times.
The ad for "American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America," by CHRIS HEDGES, was tailored to play only in the BAY AREA, to promote local appearances by the author. "We were surprised by the vociferous response," said FREE PRESS associate publisher SUZANNE DONAHUE. "It's SAN FRANCISCO, and you think of it as being open-minded, very left-leaning and a very receptive audience for the ad for the book."
In the end, the audience had a problem not with the book but with the ad copy. When read by one of the radio station's announcers -- a voice familiar to the local audience -- the words could be mistaken for the speaker's opinion.
KDFC OM/PD BILL LUETH insisted that pulling the ad is not a free-speech issue. "The ad copy made the assumption that the author was right, which made it kind of incendiary." He added, "If this book was advertised on Talk radio, it would fit. But this is a station that plays MOZART and VIVALDI."