Um, do you want to be hosting advertising for the weapons industry Mark?

Mark Thompson‘s blog is not the first place I would go for propoganda from the arms industry. But that’s what I found.

I’m definitely not looking to flame Mark or pick a fight, but it seems a little odd to me that he would want to advertise Defence Matters.

This is a website to promote the Defence Industries Council. Who are the members of the DIC? Well amongst others there are…

  • Ian King Chief Executive Officer, BAE Systems and Chairman of the Defence Industries Council
  • Sir John Rose Chief Executive Officer, Rolls Royce
  • Andrew White Chief Executive Officer, Serco Defence, Science & Nuclear

Lovely, gang I’m sure you’ll agree. What does the DIC do?

The DIC aims to take a strategic perspective of the interests of the UK defence industry and represent them effectively to Government notably through the National Defence Industries Council (NDIC) and in other relevant national and international fora.

What a lovely mission statement too!

So the DIC is a lobbying organisation whose main aim is to keep defence procurement high, the wallet of our Government open and our taxes flowing freely to them.  The Military Industrial Complex is one of the most pernicious elements of late 20th and early 21st century capitalism and I’m just surprised a blogger I respect wants to help advance its cause.

Of course I understand that it is difficult to control who advertises on your blogger hosted blog and Mark may not even be aware its there, but I would want Mark to know that this doesn’t look good.

Perhaps he can contact Google MessageSpace (see Mark’s helpful comments below) and ask them to not advertise weapons manufacturer’s propagandists on his website? Better yet, Mark could just change his byline from…

Thoughts on politics and life from a Liberal perspective

…to…

BAE, Serco and Rolls Royce and the Defence Industries Council are all a bunch of gun-totting, tax-payer-funded, scrounging, good-for-nothing wankers and they’re all terrible employers and their extortion of money from the Ministry of Defence through our dreadful procurement programme are one of the reasons why your child’s school is no longer being built and VAT is headed to 20%

That should also do the trick.

UPDATE:

Scrapbook are up to it too…

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7 thoughts on “Um, do you want to be hosting advertising for the weapons industry Mark?

  1. It’s an advert, not a political statement on behalf of me. And it’s Messagespace, not Google.

    MS is on lots of blogs across the political spectrum including LabourList, LabourHome, Lib Dem Voice, Tom Harris and as you have pointed out, Political Scrapbook (see here for a fuller list: http://www.messagespace.co.uk/publishers/).

    If you are offended by what they are advertising you might want to take it up with them rather than start listing all the blogs that carry the networked adverts.

    1. Like I said I’m not looking for beef.

      Personally I just wouldn’t be happy with the weapons industry advertising on my blog. It may not be a direct political statement, but you’re still helping to promote them and taking their money.

      I can’t think of an industry less in tune with liberal values than the arms industry. Massive subsidies from government and the profiteering from murder.

      I didn’t know if you were aware (because often when you’re logged into your blog you can’t see the adverts on it) so I thought I’d highlight it. But I certainly wouldn’t sign up with Messagespace unless they could guarantee I wouldn’t promote the arms industry propaganda machine. Surely there are opt outs which Messagespace can offer?

      I’m not listing all the blogs which carry the networked adverts, just the ones I am surprised to see them on.

      I’m not surprised to see Tom Harris or Iain Dale carry this stuff, but I was surprised last night to see it on your blog.

  2. You do realise that this is tageted advertising, likely appearing on your browser due to the fact you have performed defense related searchs and been on related websites?
    I myself get loads of adverts for plentyoffish.com, presumably because i have a perverted grandad.
    Maybe keep your spart-rage focused on ‘the corporations’ instead of innocent bloggers?

    1. I try to keep things civil but I do sense a teeny tad of hostility in your comment.

      I’m not sure how you can say I have “spart-rage” when I tried to keep this piece inquisitive rather than accusatory. I have already made it clear to mark I’m not attacking just raising something I think worth raising.

      A couple more points.

      1) If this is targeted (and you’ve provided no evidence it is) then it is still advertising for the UK arms industry which I find hard to support in any way shape of form. (Protectionist, militarist, consumerist, distorting, misleading).

      2) I don’t search on defence topics much, this blog is not concerned so much with military matters. Even as a historian Military history has always bored me.

      Finally, you should let your granddad do whatever makes him happy, he’s earned it.

      1. No no hostility, i just thought it quite reactionary of you jumping to the conclusion that you did. I visit those blogs all the time (as well as yours) and have never seen even similar adverts to those.

        Provide evidence for it? Im not sure what evidence i can offer, i know it to be a fact that ISPs offer targeted advertising as a commercial service, talk talk, virgin and bt certainly do, using the phorn system, they will be controlling what adverts are displayed in allocated advertising space on each site you visit based on the searching habits listed under your IP.

        So its nothing to do with either Mark or PS, they have merely pasted a bit of html code onto their site. Maybe an apology wouldnt go amiss.

        1. I don’t see how its reactionary.

          I’m not attacking these blogs. But it is difficult to say “you are hosting advertising which I think it is morally wrong to host” without sounding a little aggressive. I apologise for my tone if it has offended them, but not for my position.

          But you see, although all they did was post a bit of html onto their sites, the result of said action is hosting advertising for the uk arms industry which is morally wrong.

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