A public controversy has recently arisen regarding withdrawal of advertising from On Line Opinion because of material published on a comments thread attached to an article by Christian activist Bill Muehlenberg. Details of the issue can be found in this post.
Larvatus Prodeo wishes to point out that this blog is associated with On Line Opinion only through an agreement to bundle several public affairs websites together for the purpose of selling advertising space under the rubric of The Domain. Any editorial, policy and publication decisions regarding content and comment are the sole responsibility of each individual website.
We do not share the views Mr Young puts forward in his article regarding free speech, the complaints of aggrieved parties and the decisions of advertisers (including ANZ and IBM), and we disagree with his views on the appropriate moderation of the comments thread in question. We have only been aware of this issue for a few days.
We recognise that Mr Young has a different approach to issues of acceptable and unacceptable speech, and we have no doubt that he has formed that approach in good faith. We cast no aspersions on his motivations and note OLO’s policy on the publication of offensive material. However, we wish to emphasise that his position and ours are completely separate and independent of each other.
LP takes a strong stand against the vilification of people based on sexual preference, and does not condone homophobic speech under any circumstances. LP’s comments policy can be found here.
LP also supports companies formulating a strong diversity and anti-discrimination policy, and acting in accordance with those values.
This statement has been posted because the name of this blog has been associated with On Line Opinion in discussion of this issue, because of the shared advertising. LP has been adversely impacted by all this, but we also believe that it needs to be understood that our reaction to that impact, and to the issues underlying the controversy, are different from those of Mr Young, and others who have written on this issue, such as Christopher Pearson.