FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JULY 3, 2015 – Chicago IL: On Wednesday evening, July 1, the producer for our radio show was alerted to an article posted on Yahoo News, an ABC News property, that featured his likeness, under the headline: Homophobes on Facebook are ‘American Flagging’ Their Facebook Profile Pictures as a Protest Against Pride. Beneath this photo was the article subhead: This radio producer has been promoting the tool on Facebook. Neither claim is true.
The following morning, we began calling for Yahoo News and Yahoo corporate to explain the defamation, remove the image of our director and clarify that our non profit organization had never stated or promoted the flag, and tighten their sloppy journalistic practices that could result in such a patently false representation of a man and a non profit that are in no way opposed to marriage of same sex couples. His post and photo were clearly outside the story context, and were used without any regard for journalistic integrity.
As the day went on, the article garnered over 1,500 comments, overwhelmingly supportive of the American flag overlay. However, we continued to receive reports through social media that Yahoo was deleting comments from the article that were favorable to our point of view. After pointing out to Yahoo News on Twitter, with attached screen shots, that we could see their activity and knew they were deleting comments, those comments were then re-approved by Yahoo News, and again appeared on their site.
Yahoo subsequently removed our producer’s photo from their UK site, where the story originally appeared, changed the title of the headline, but continued to ignore our calls to remove the false and inflammatory story, which most users were using to merely express their patriotism.
This is not appropriate behavior for a news outlet, and we are calling for ABC News to force Yahoo News to tighten up their editorial standards.
In what may be the most ironic twist in this story, shortly after the story was posted, the gay conservative who created the American flag overlay tool responded to Yahoo with a scathing Facebook post, followed by his own Twitter response, condemning the story. https://www.facebook.com/CHAPMANGOP?fref=ts
We are calling for ABC and Yahoo to:
- Remove or re-train Katie Solomon as a contributor
- Remove the inflammatory and false article
- Deny the author any revenue earned through this false, misleading, click-bait article
Is there any wonder that the latest TransferWise poll on patriotism shows a decline in favorable feelings about being American? This latest attack on free speech makes it more clear to us than ever that the most fashionable phobia in America, is patriophobia.
You can follow the story on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/RedNationRising
24 hour media line: (872) 215-2590
Lu Esposito, Communications Director (volunteer)
ABOUT RED NATION RISING
Red Nation Rising is an organic community of social media activists working to restore the American republic and the American dream. We are currently an unfunded organization, powered by the passion of our volunteers. Our hashtag conversations generate hundreds of millions of impressions a week on Twitter, consistently increasing for nearly 2 years. You can find us at red-nation-rising.com or @RedNationRising. We inspire conversation on our hashtag, as part of our mission, at #RedNationRising.