MS and Amazon advertise on Islamic Resistance site

Accidentally back anti-Zionist psychological warfare...

Microsoft and Amazon have been caught advertising on a Hizbollah-backed Web Lebanese Web site. Both companies protest that, er, they didn't know, and have had the advertising pulled.

The goofs were reportedly spotted by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which noted the ads on the site of Al-Manar Television, which styles itself as: "A Lebanese TV station that aims to preserve the islamic values and to enhance the civilized role of the Arab and Islamic Community. Al-Manar is the first Arab establishment to stage an effective psychological warfare against the Zionist enemy."

Pretty clear, you'd think? If not, the site's front door carries the tag "Islamic Resistance Support Association" up at the top, and solicits donations "in support of the oppressed Palestinian people [and] for the sustenance of the Intifadah."

Not of course that either Microsoft or Amazon was in a position to notice this, as apparently the ad programme used doesn't involve any vetting of sites by, or even any knowledge from, the client. It's the affiliate programme that gets the blame. You encourage as many sites as possible to shove up ads in exchange for a take of any revenue driven by those ads. So in most cases the money involved in negligible, while the admin overhead of actually checking who's running the ads would be entirely impossible.

Microsoft's control policy, apparently, is one of "notice and take down." And we see some fun to be had here, given that the company doesn't seem terribly capable of noticing under its own steam. We'd be interested to ear from alert/inventive Register readers who spot ads for major companies in deeply embarrasing places. Or even better, can arrange to put them there. You up to it? ®

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