Online ad exchange AppNexus cuts off Breitbart

Popular online ad exchange bans site for violating hate speech policy

Steve BannonOnline advertising exchange AppNexus said Wednesday it has barred Breitbart News, the ultraconservative outlet that has served as a platform for the “alt-right,” a white nationalist movement.

AppNexus said it removed Breitbart from its advertising network because the online news site had violated its policy against hate speech.

Breitbart can still sell ads, just not on AppNexus’ online marketplace, the second largest to Google’s. Breitbart was not a direct client of AppNexus but its access to some advertisers will be cut as a result of the move, although it’s unclear how much this would hurt its revenue.

A representative for Breitbart did not immediately return a message seeking comment Wednesday.

Breitbart emerged during the campaign as an unabashed backer of President-elect Donald Trump, who has named Steve Bannon (pictured), the news site’s former leader, as chief White House strategist.

AppNexus spokesman Josh Zeitz said in an email that his company bars sites that “contain pornography, graphic violence, pirated material, or hate speech.” Also barred are sites that attract a lot of nonhuman traffic or appear to be “content farms” that produce articles for the sole purpose of generating clicks.

AppNexus determined that Breitbart “deployed crude racial, ethnic, gender, and sexual slurs in a way that could incite violence or discrimination against minority groups,” he said.

Facebook and Google have said recently that they are prohibiting fake news sites from using their ad networks. This case is different though — AppNexus is not banning Breitbart for posting fake news, but for posting hate.

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