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The Atlantic's Scientology Advertorial 213

magic maverick writes "The Atlantic recently ran an 'advertorial' for the 'Church of Scientology'. During this time, they filtered comments and removed negative comments. While they have since apologized, has an interesting run down of what they did wrong, from both a moral and business perspective." It turns out these sponsored stories are commonplace, and a serious source of revenue: "Native ads are critical to The Atlantic’s livelihood. They are one element of digital advertising revenue, which in 2012 accounted for a striking 59 percent of the brand’s overall advertising revenue haul. Unclear just how much of the digital advertising revenue stems from sponsor content. We’re working on that."
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The Atlantic's Scientology Advertorial

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  • Slashvertisement (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @01:11PM (#42605383)

    This article is something, coming from a tech site that has blatantly posted advertisements disguised as stories, intentionally or not.

    The only reason the atlantic caught shit was that it was that CoS is easy an hated target, product placement articles are nothing new or interesting.

  • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @01:57PM (#42606051) Homepage

    He's a good actor.

    He's a middling actor at best, and lately has been stuck in the same tired re-hash of his hero fantasy.

    Watch his movies if you like them, stop giving a shit about his personal life.

    I'm sorry, but having seen him jumping on Oprah's sofa, and talking about how modern medical science is wrong about anti-depressants and the like ... he's a crackpot idiot.

    You want to make extraordinary claims? Back 'em up or STFU. He sure as heck can't back them up.

    I don't give a shit what he does in his personal life ... but I'm sure as hell not going to watch his movies and give the impression he deserves more of a public forum.

    By all means, feel free to watch what he's making if you're into that -- but to me he's moved into the realm of actors I dislike and won't watch his stuff.

  • by Loosifur ( 954968 ) on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @02:32PM (#42606545)

    Foreign Policy, which was bought by the Washington Post a few years ago, started running these type of things around the time (shortly before or after, don't recall) of the change in ownership. Now that I think about it, it was probably shortly after, because the Post itself began running a bunch of "Chinawatch" segments on its site, which were basically advertorials from China Daily, one of China's state-run newspapers. At any rate, around the time I noticed that FP started to be over half full of ads by volume, and that easily 3/4 of that was some marketing drivel about how awesome China is, or how Dubai is doing such wonderful things in the world, is when I dropped my subscription. I'm not paying for a bimonthly travel brochure, and I'm sure as hell not reading a magazine about international relations that sells ad space to propagandists.

  • by anagama ( 611277 ) <> on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @02:38PM (#42606659) Homepage

    I cam across this very long, very interesting story about Scientology last night which details how with diminishing membership, it is trying to squeeze the very last dime out of those remaining and accelerating its die-off. []

    But inside the church, the Ideal Orgs are sparking insurrection. Across the country, donors and high-ranking executives say that the aggressive fundraising and construction scheme is used to enrich the central church at the expense of the rank and file, helping to grow the Scientology war chest to over a billion dollars. Two former members, Mike Rinder and Mark Elliott, went so far as to call the project a "real estate scam." To some of these defectors, the structures are metaphors for the religion itself: garish on the outside, empty on the inside. The irony is that the very expansion that Scientology lauds as its renaissance is actually a symbol of internal dissent and decline.


      And the ranks of the faithful are dropping. In 2008, there were 25,000 self-identifying American Scientologists, down by over a half from 55,000 in 2001, according to the American Religious Identification Survey. (Over the same time period, the number of Wiccans more than doubled from 134,000 to 342,000.) The 2011 British census showed a total of 2,418 Scientologists across England and Wales; about 73 times as many Brits identified themselves as "Jedi."

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