‘Misinformation’ Honcho Says Jim Jordan Is ‘Assaulting’ Ad Industry By Asking For Documents That Could Prove Partisan Bias
Representative Jim Jordan, a Republican from Ohio, during a House Oversight and Accountability Committee hearing in Washington, DC, US, on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg
Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

An advertising industry trade group under congressional investigation for its role in alleged collusion between the world’s largest companies to push a leftist agenda is worried that the investigation will have a “chilling effect” on its efforts.

Anonymous sources from the Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) complained to Business Insider that congressional oversight from Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) has been an inconvenience that’s distracting them from completing their latest project, “a major piece of work that aims to create standards for measuring and disclosing carbon emissions produced by media and advertising,” Business Insider reported.

GARM previously set standards that forbid companies from buying ad space from media outlets that promote “misinformation,” while targeting mainstream conservative outlets including Fox News and The Daily Wire, Jordan, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, said in letters to companies on GARM’s Steer Team.

“Evidence the Committee has obtained suggests that GARM members, led by Steer Team members, are colluding to demonetize conservative platforms and voices. Further, this coordination does not always revolve around ‘brand safety’ and ‘harmful’ content as GARM publicly claims, but instead the desire to censor conservative and other views that GARM members disfavor,” Jordan wrote, saying such conduct could run afoul of antitrust laws.

The anonymous GARM sources acknowledged that roping major corporations, the kind that want to sell everyday goods to all Americans, into a partisan controversy is terrible for their members, saying the member companies that belong to GARM “want to avoid any kind of public qualm that has a partisan signature like the plague.”

Another advertising source complained of a “chilling effect,” apparently referring to having to change the way they operate to avoid such a left-wing signature.

The Judiciary Committee responded to the complaint by saying that the notion that these corporate giants are being harassed is “laughable.”

“The idea that seven massive corporations are being harassed for having to comply with new documents requests is laughable,” a committee spokesman said. “These companies know the evidence collected shows that members of GARM have worked for years to spread their personal biases and censor conservative voices and journalists online. These companies are simply trying to get ahead of the incriminating evidence before it becomes public.”

The GARM sources themselves seemed to support that in their comments to Business Insider, saying they were concerned that lawsuits could be imminent. Business Insider noted that documents obtained by Congress could be handed over to red-state attorneys general or to conservative media outlets who could use them to show that they were financially harmed by “brand safety” initiatives that were secretly motivated by partisanship.

Coming to the defense of GARM against claims that its anti-misinformation efforts are partisan is a group that stands to profit off of the “anti-misinformation” regime while being closely tied to far-left groups.

The chief strategy officer of Ad Fontes Media, Lou Paskalis, said there is a “blinding-you-with-paperwork aspect to Jim Jordan’s assault on GARM,” that the Republican was “embarrassing himself,” and that it wouldn’t change GARM.

Ad Fontes makes its money ranking media outlets by who it says peddles misinformation. The ratings firm sent out a celebratory email after Trump and his 18 Republican co-defendants were indicted in Georgia, praising the “wheels of justice.” The Media Research Center said, “Ad Fontes’ whole ranking system is a lie aimed at telling Americans to trust the leftist media and not to trust anyone on the right.”

Both Ad Fontes’ CEO and director of communications are also officials with Media Literacy Now, a radical leftist group that, on behalf of the U.S. Department of State, organized a conference for teachers that trained them in techniques used by Germany, which does not have a First Amendment, to “inoculate” children against misinformation.

MLN also lobbies states to make laws requiring such “media literacy” training in schools, calling it a “tool to create the society we all deserve: one that nurtures racial equity, social justice, and true democracy. Media literacy equals cultural change.”

The Daily Wire is suing the State Department for backing other “misinformation” groups, arguing that they were aimed at financially harming domestic media that covered the administration skeptically.

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