Facebook has made more than half a million dollars in advertising revenue from listed anti-LGBT+ hate groups in just over a year, according to reports.
Analysis of Facebook’s advert transparency data by Sludge revealed that the social media giant took a total of $1.6 million from groups defined by the Southern Poverty Law Center extremism watchdog as hate groups.
A total of $541,977, just under a third of the total hate group ad spend, came from organisations designated as anti-LGBT+ hate groups.
The spending only covers the period from May 2018 when the company began to publish some data on ad spending, meaning the total spent by the groups could be far higher.
One advert from anti-LGBT+ Christian group The American Vision, shown to thousands of people, linked to a blog post that referred to gay people as “evil”.
Anti-LGBT+ hate group Alliance Defending Freedom, which has advocated for the criminalisation of homosexuality and led efforts to unpick state anti-discrimination laws, accounted for a massive $392,000 of the spending.
The group is currently running ads in support of business owners who have refused to serve LGBT+ people, claiming they “face punishment for living out their faith”.
Other ADF ads target transgender people, claiming: “Men don’t belong in women’s sports”, while one shown to at least 50,000 people asks: “Should government bureaucrats and judges have the power to redefine ‘sex’ to mean ‘gender identity’ in federal law?”
Anti-LGBT+ hate group Family Research Council, which has spent $107,000 on Facebook ads, has openly conflated gay people with paedophiles, claiming: “While activists like to claim that paedophilia is a completely distinct orientation from homosexuality, evidence shows a disproportionate overlap between the two. It is a homosexual problem.”
Another video advert from FRC’s lobbying PAC, shown to more than a million people, features an “ultimate social justice warrior” dressed in a gender fluid outfit, tackling conservatives and yelling “this is a safe space!”