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Someone Is Paying For These Ads, and Dartmouth College Is, Too

UV1.jpg

UV2.jpgSo you are looking for a word on heavily trafficked Dictionary.com, and up pop ads like the ones above, at right and below. Que pasa? Someone is paying real money to run these advertisements. And we’re not talking about a fringe web page here; Dictionary.com has more than 52 million monthly users.

Think of the impact that such ads will have on a high school student or a college counselor whom Google has identified as doing searches about Dartmouth and/or Ivy League schools. The College-related scandals are already starting to add up in the popular consciousness, and now readers learn on a neutral website that Dartmouth has a problem, a rape problem. This kind of relentless media hammering has got to hurt us.

The group behind these ads is called UltraViolet. It has put together an on-line petition that reads as follows:

Tell the Dartmouth administration: The crisis of sexual assaults on campus must be stopped. Take student recommendations seriously and expel rapists, list rape as a punishable offense and expulsion as the preferred punishment in the student handbook, and block access to the ‘rape guide’ on campus.”

In mid-March, the group announced that the petition had received over 50,000 signatures.

UltraViolet receives substantial funding from the Citizens Engagement Laboratory, an activist organization that gives online support to a range of leftwing pressure groups. CEL’s board of directors includes alumni from Harvard, Penn, and Yale.

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Addendum: An alert reader reports that UltraViolet has been diffusing the below sponsored post on Facebook:

UV FB1.jpg

If you click on it, you are taken to UltraViolet’s petition page about the College.

Addendum: An earlier Facebook post by UltraViolet had some grammar problems:

UltraViolet Facebook.jpg

Or perhaps UV thinks that alums speak like Neanderthals?

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