The original story seemed so, so stupid to me that I didn’t deem it worth commenting on. Podcast Movement, the podcast industry’s biggest conference, took place in Dallas two weeks ago. Most major audio companies were represented there, including The Daily Wire, conservative pundit Ben Shapiro’s media company. The Wire paid for a booth at the exhibition hall, and Shapiro showed up at the conference to visit his own company’s booth, which is not abnormal in any way. Never mind: some of the usual Censorious Creeps from the Bitter Left complained like Shapiro was a leper or a contagion or Donald Trump or something: many complained that Shapiro made them feel uncomfortable and “unsafe” as women, people of color, and transgenders… because of his opinions. That was enough for Podcast Movement’s organizers to issue a groveling Twitter apology:
Hi folks, we owe you an apology before sessions kick off for the day. Yesterday afternoon, Ben Shapiro briefly visited the PM22 expo area near The Daily Wire booth. Though he was not registered or expected, we take full responsibility for the harm done by his presence. There’s no way around it: We agreed to sell The Daily Wire a first-time booth based on the company’s large presence in podcasting. The weight of that decision is now painfully clear. Shapiro is a co-founder. A drop-in, however unlikely, should have been considered a possibility. Those of you who called this ‘unacceptable’ are right….Many in our community are appalled not just by this incident, but by our choice to take money from TDW in the first place. As @amahnke said, “this was signed off on by a human.” Yes. During event planning, the dangerous nature of the company’s messaging was overlooked… In 9 wonderful years growing and celebrating this medium, PM has made mistakes. The pain caused by this one will always stick with us. We promise that sponsors will be more carefully considered moving forward…“We’re putting in place policies to guide our social media & events with inclusivity, diversity & respect for all. It’s a journey. We’ll keep listening, keep growing together.”
“Harm done.” Harm done! By Shapiro’s presence at a podcaster convention, which his company was supporting by buying a booth! “Respect for all”…except anyone who won’t fall into lockstep with current leftist totalitarian cant.
It’s really, really hard not to hate people like this, and I won’t, but I’ll still give it a “McClintock”…
The grovel was sent August 25, then backlash from conservatives and sane people began. The organization deleted the tweets. Then a major podcast power, Cumulus, announced it was withdrawing from future Podcast Movement events. Cumulus is the third-biggest radio company in the country and represents the Daily Wire’s podcasts as well other conservative shows. So Podcast Movement apologized for the apology! Company President Dan Frank released the following statement:
As we stated, we’re continuing to evaluate our policies guiding social media & events with inclusivity, diversity & respect for all. We have to start by sincerely apologizing to Mr. Shapiro for our reaction when he visited a booth we sold his company. That wasn’t right. Podcast Movement began in 2014, with four podcasters who had an idea to create a vibrant community that was for podcasters, by podcasters. We’re still those people with the same idea, and recognize there’s work to do as we grow. We are now looking to move forward, as we focus on that original mission from 2014 – being a hub for podcasting events, resources, news, and thought leadership.”
That apology is an insincere and worthless as the original apology was abject weenyism. If the first apology was sincere, then the company couldn’t possibly believe what its second apology claimed. The translation:”We have no principles. We have no integrity We don’t believe in anything, except making money.”
I’m temped to run the Duke’s punch again.
Shapiro accepted the apology, saying on his podcast yesterday that it’s “a good sign for America when people back off of censorious viewpoints…In fact, this may be the first time I’ve actually seen a significant company back off a censorious viewpoint, thanks to blowback.”
Yecchhh again. First of all, it isn’t the first time corporate weenies have flip-flopped like the Flying Wallendas when they realized what they thought was a popular stand might lose them money. I’ve just covered a few of them, but there are more. Here’s Cracker Barrel’s grand weenie moment; here’s A&E‘s.
Why does Shapiro think this is a good sign? Is it a good sign that companies will bend to whoever makes the biggest stink, no matter what the facts and ethics involved are? The proliferation of weenies all over the culture is a terrible sign for the United States of America. This nation was not created by weenies, nor can it survive if weenies rule.