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Brands Suspend Advertising On X Amid Antisemitism Controversy

Disney, Apple, Paramount and Lionsgate suspended marketing on X amid an antisemitism storm on the site.

Numerous prominent advertisers on the social media platform withdraw their spending in response to his remarks, as backlash intensifies over Elon Musk's support of an antisemitic conspiracy theory on X.

Disney said it was suspending spending on X, as did Lionsgate, the entertainment and film distribution company, and Paramount Global, the media giant that owns CBS. Apple, which spends tens of millions of dollars a year on X, also suspended advertising on the platform, a person with knowledge of the situation said. They followed IBM, which cut its spending with X on Thursday.

Mr. Musk, who bought Twitter last year and renamed it X, has been under scrutiny for months for allowing and even stoking antisemitic abuse on the site. This snowballed on Wednesday when the tech billionaire agreed with a post on X that accused Jewish people who are facing antisemitism amid the Israel-Hamas war of pushing the “exact kind of dialectical hatred against whites that they claim to want people to stop using against them” and supporting the immigration of “hordes of minorities.”

“You have said the actual truth,” Mr. Musk replied.

Jewish groups have compared the statement in the original post to a belief known as replacement theory, a conspiracy theory that posits that nonwhite immigrants, organized by Jews, intend to replace the white race. That idea fueled Robert Bowers, who raged against Jewish people online before killing 11 worshipers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in 2018.

On Friday, the White House condemned Mr. Musk, for boosting the anti-Jewish conspiracy theory. Andrew Bates, a White House spokesman, said in a statement that it was “unacceptable to repeat the hideous lie behind the most fatal act of antisemitism in American history at any time, let alone one month after the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust.”

A spokesperson for X opted not to comment on the advertising pauses, while there was no response from Apple. Axios initially reported on Apple's decision, and Bloomberg previously covered the suspension by Lionsgate.

Linda Yaccarino, X’s chief executive, posted on the site on Thursday that the company had been “extremely clear about our efforts to combat antisemitism and discrimination.” But on Friday, Mr. Musk agreed with a post on X that suggested advertisers like IBM were pulling back from the platform to save face.

He later said accounts that made “clear calls for extreme violence" would be suspended, highlighting two phrases associated with Palestinian supporters that would not be tolerated on the site.


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