Dershowitz Say “No Thanks” To Holocaust Denial Pizza

alan-dershowitzzuckerbergHarvard Professor and 1st Amendment Free Speech Expert Alan Dershowitz has gone public with his support of companies who choose not to advertise with Facebook if their ads appear next to Anti-Semitic hate content including Facebook Holocaust Denial Groups.  Here is what he had to say in response to the decision of Dominos Pizza to insist that Facebook ensure that their ads not appear next to any Anti-Semitic content or face loss of the account:

“Alan Dershowitz” <redacted.harvard.edu>

To:

brian.cuban@dallasmavs.com

“Freedom of speech and association certainly includes the right not be associated in any way with antiSemitic hate speech. I applaud advertisers who exercise their rights by refusing to advertise in proximity to Holocaust deniers”

Will other advertisers follow in the footsteps of Dominos and refuse to do business with Facebook if their ads show up in conjunction with Anti-Semitic hate content including but not limited to Holocaust Denial?  I hope they will.

Will Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg finally come out from behind his lawyers and P.R. spin gurus and release a  statement addressing the Holocaust Denial issue?  He certainly had no problem immediately  dealing with the advertising aspect  when actual revenue was on the line.  Is the problem of Anti-Semitic hate speech no less virulent if it is not about advertising dollars  but about the simple concept of doing what is right and socially conscious branding“?

Are you listening Mark?  Do you get it?  Your advertisers certainly do.  Are they that much smarter or socially conscious than you??


15 Comments For This Post

  1. pdl Says:

    "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

    I can see Zuckerbergs point.

  2. John Sullivan (10 comments.) Says:

    Sadly they FB will probably reverse their whole decision if there's money involved.
    I wonder if you'd be so passionate about this issue if you weren't Jewish ?
    And the so called manipulation and control of the media is just proved by this
    shakedown. Erase it /delete these groups or you will loose our ads? what's that ? a shake down.
    This really just fosters and reinforces what many people think about American Jews.
    I actually wrote a post after doing a little looking into the JIDF <<<<another shake down Crew
    if they have passion about what they are doing why have a donation button and a store ?
    Can't they finance their little lame racist website on their own or do they specialize in creating drama and play on people's passions to make a buck ?
    You can get gear to show support LOL .
    I know you and people will think I 'm anti Jewish I'm not at all when people say Jokes or nasty things about the Irish I either LOOK to see if it's true or I ignore the person.
    You beat this topic to death
    http://potpolitics.com/2009/05/21/why-i-dont-like… <thats MAY
    Brian I like you and your blog I have read many great post :)
    I even went and wrote comments to ignore these lame nobodies but didn't press submit. I read all your post about this issue .I went and looked at these groups. They're a joke and your not so get back to writing about something serious like the texas prison system, homelessness or the many other fine post you have written.
    These Punks posed no threat to anyone they are losers and I think people see them for that.
    All these little Power moves and pressure don't make things look GOOD

  3. bcuban Says:

    John, I have "known" you in social media for a while and never would have thought you were anti-semitic until you left these two posts on my FB page.

    "Yes I seen it a millions times. People are scared to say anything about the Jews I'm not because I see them as just another group of people no better or worse then anyone else."

    and

    "Even though they often think they're special > are they really ? Jew Arab Chinese is all the same to me
    We don't send 3+ billion a year to Ireland"

    These are clearly statements of anti-semitic animus. I now do believe you are anti-semitic and possibly just a bigot in general. I feel sorry for you.

  4. Heather Says:

    Not only is he a bigot, but he's obviously a bigot without a command of the English language.

    "Jew Arab Chinese is all the same to me" AND "I seen it a million times"

    Mr. Sullivan, it's called a comma…learn it, live it, love it.

  5. jedsa (2 comments.) Says:

    I cannot see Zuckerberg's point. It would be one thing if Facebook was an open marketplace of ideas that did not censor anyone at all. But that is not the case.

    When Facebook censors some things but not others, it is responsible for the content that it allows.

  6. Rob Says:

    Hey Brian,
    I follow your stuff from time to time, here and on Twitter. I have to say I don't really get it. Sure, it's a given that hateful remarks about a group of people are a bad thing, but is it really of any consequence? Would not responding be a better course of action? I suppose that I may be a bit blinkered on this subject, but I just can't see how the comments of a few bitter & twisted individuals could be actually damaging. Here in the UK, the BNP are having a minor 15 minutes of fame, but they are pretty much universally reviled and considered to be pathetic. Their leader, Nick Griffin, has a pair of dogs called, I think, "Anne" & "Frank". Nasty, but pathetic and not worth engaging him about. Am I missing the point? Maybe, but then again maybe not – do we need to engage with these people, and if so – why?

  7. Mrs G (7 comments.) Says:

    I am not Jewish, I am actually one who is a Kabbalist which is more for me spiritual, what I am is human and via many friends be it Jewish, Christian, Gay Bi whatever, you name it, I have met many, there is some things that are just in humane, Hate SPEECH period is wrong, I spent years in advertising for my husband, A magazine in which Alan Dershowitz wrote for. It was his column advertisers wanted next too. As my husband spoke to Brian a few weeks back FACE BOOK has the power and the ability to yank these few hate spoken denial groups and if they think that by using there ego and saying we dont have too, as an ex head of advertising , Watch your ass Mark Z, unless you want to start charging people to have a face book account, if I was not doing the things I have to do I would wage a personal war on each of your advertisers and the POWER OF PUBLISHING. And the POWER OF being branded next to a HATE GROUP. With the right person to put together a small media kit to all your advertisers in which your lucky my time is limited I would hit everyone real damn HARD. Bad press is better then no press but to allow hatred in your arena and forum due to what I can only think of is ego and that you want to win against a CUABAN your picking the wrong issue to tackle. To have Alan who TEACHES FIRST AMENDMENT AND HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES, HE SPOKE OF WHICH IS WRONG WHAT DONT YOU GET MARK Z? Mrs Bob Guccione And to those who think that having to call names against a man like Alan he is use to this, it only makes him stronger. Brian stick with Alan, he is the best in the field of Law this my husband let me know the day I went in to the office!

  8. Kyle Says:

    There are two separate ideas at play here:

    1. Do advertisers, who are sensitive to their consumers' wants and preferences, know that their ads are appearing alongside such groups?

    2. Is the position of Holocaust Denial feasible and acceptable?

    The first is a money-related issue. The second is a matter of reason. If one is to believe that the Holocaust never happened, then this person should also argue that evolutionary is no more than a theory. The Holocaust did happen–it has been factually proven, not fabricated. To support a person that defies reason and fact is to support ignorance. Ignorance is dangerous because susceptible minds, especially younger computer/Facebook users, who are uninformed could come to believe what they see confirmed by extremely vocal antagonists. To support close-mindedness is to breed a kind of knowledge that can contaminate all efforts towards finding peace between peoples like Palestinians and Israelis.

    This group does not advertise itself as a joke and it continues to grow daily. To think something like this is funny or acceptable is not a matter of free speech; instead, it is a matter of discretion. Our right to free speech is not unlimited or absolute, nor should any of us be led to believe that because we can theoretically speak our minds that we should. It is insensitive to survivors and their progeny to hold such an ill-informed decision. If you were to deny such things as slavery or genocide, you would be properly called a fool. What this world needs is compassion, not animosity.

    Brian, I applaud your work. Complacency does not lead to understanding as "Rob" may think.

  9. Mrs G (7 comments.) Says:

    Well, here is how adds and companies work, Dominoes lost my support many moons ago, due to giving money to pro life, to help stop a woman's right to choose. Due to a well made choice and the FIRST to do so, I just bought me a pizza:) It may be the only one I buy, but I bought it…. My friends son is eating it I eat macrobiotics. A

  10. John Sullivan (10 comments.) Says:

    Dude I'm not anti semetic nor does my life revolve around my brother,
    When we're blind and throw LABELS around we don't solve the problem
    but create more.If you thinking I'm anti semetic oh well>I'm just tired of many Jews
    thinking their so f*cking special their NOT :)
    They are just like everyone else
    I guess if anyone disagrees with your take on manipulating the media, your readers etc
    their anti semetic Oh well . The real issue is that Facebook didn't just give in Now let's cry about it and attempt a shake down. Sue them it's an outrage.

  11. bcuban Says:

    "If you thinking I'm anti semetic oh well&gt;I'm just tired of many Jews
    thinking their so f*cking special their NOT :) "

    No your not anti-semitic, not you…

    I would have a life that revolves around my brother than your life which clearly revolves around bigotry and hatred. You are one desperate pathetic character John…

  12. Phil Lozen Says:

    Mrs. G, we're glad you gave us a try again. Hope you enjoyed. As for your comments on giving money to pro-life organizations, I'd just like you to know that you might be thinking of the personal actions of our former owner. He hasn't owned us for more than 10 years. In that time, the leadership of the company has been almost entirely turned over and he has no input on the company at all anymore. Thanks

  13. Heather Says:

    …who still can't seem to figure out when to insert a comma into his rants…

  14. Rob Says:

    Kyle,

    Your guess at what I was thinking is wide of the mark. In fact, there's no need to guess as I explicitly and very clearly state a question – which you did not answer. This seems to me to be typical of this problem: There's a lot more heat than light generated.
    The reason I asked the question is that things may be different in the US, but here in the UK holocaust denial is treated with disdain, completely marginalised and utterly risible. There simply isn't a need to engage with it because, as yet, none of its proponents are taken seriously by enough people to make it a threat to anyone. We have other race relations problems that require ongoing attention and action, because they affect peoples lives in a tangible and often dangerous and violent way. Holocaust denial simply isn't up there in the scale of things. Holocaust denial has been visible for all my adult life at least (over 20 years), and at no point, at least here in the UK, has it transmogrified from "Nasty & Unpleasant Idiocy" into "OK we have to stop these people because they are doing damage".
    I do not suggest complacency – of course not, otherwise I would not be here and elsewhere keeping an eye on this issue.

  15. Kyle Says:

    Rob,

    "Complacency: a feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, etc."

    I don't mean to get into an ad hominem discussion, but we cannot equate the UK and US in terms of race relations. Things are much more sensitive here to the degree that discussion of these matters is (as you correctly pointed out) heated. People respond emotionally rather than rationally. The point that I was responded to in your comment was the matter of ignoring the groups. It is not possible to ignore this matter. If it continues to grow (as it is indeed doing), there is potential for damage. Some much misinformation exists currently that such things should be addressed and quickly put to rest.

    To ignore, sadly, is to support tacitly. MLK would agree. The sanctity of free speech in the US is taken to a point that is nowhere supported in the Constitution. Some would have you believe that they can say and do as they please. This is simply not the case. Because of the popularity of Facebook and the age of most of its users, it is necessary that we militate against such groups. This is not a joke, and it is sad that in America we somehow support hate groups as if we are proud of our ability to speak freely and likewise proud of our indiscretion in speaking.

    I applaud your articulateness. It is strange that race relations between the Anglos and Indians in the UK and White and Blacks in America is similar but is treated and spoken about so differently. Would you agree?

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