Angelo Carusone, Tweeter Behind @StopRush and @StopBeck, On Rush Limbaugh's Implosion

StopRush.png
Angelo Carusone is the Director of Online Strategy for Media Matters for America. Even prior to that gig, he's been known in the Twitterverse during the past couple of years as @StopBeck, an online campaign to let Glenn Beck's advertisers know where their advertising dollars were going. The Voice spoke with Carusone by phone from Washington, D.C. after his @StopRush Twitter actively rang the Limbaugh death bell over the weekend.

Here's an edited transcript of our conversation.

Why did you start Stop Beck?

I started it on July 2nd, 2009, during the summer between by second and third year of law school. For me, it was an interesting time. I was in law school, getting an info dump. I was trying to figure out what I was going to do, and for me, it became clear that things were pretty messed up. Our policies are messed up, and didn't think the conversation around them was going well. I started looking at the irresponsible, reckless pillars of the media. Beck represented the worst of them at the time. He was extremely reckless, and illustrated the very worst of the media abdicating their responsibility. That's why I picked him as a first target. Things for him turned out to be bad business. I think people should have opinions, and express them passionately, but there is a responsible way of doing that. He was being completely irresponsible, and that's why I started Stop Beck, in July of 2009.

And then a month later, he called President Obama a racist. I started Stop Beck, and the next month, he really ramped up why he was problematic. Before that, there wasn't a magnifying glass on what he was doing. He helped put a larger microscope on the many ways his program was troublesome.

What was Beck's Waterloo moment? And when did you know you were having an effect?

For me, I always believed it would have an effect. I believe persistence pays off. I always told people, [Beck] might have a platform, but it was a two-year plus campaign. But it was effective every day, because we attached real financial consequences to what he was doing. [Here's] a link to those financial consequences to what Beck was doing. We went back and got advertisers' rates, and showed that the number of paid ads decreased, and that the rates themselves decreased, during Beck's show on Fox. Fox was getting three to six times less from the same ad, from the same advertiser, than other Fox News shows. So it was effective everyday.

For me, as we moved into 2011, it was obvious that Fox News knew it had a more significant problem on their hands. They' been absorbing losses for a long time, and the problems increased. It became clear that this was bad business for them.

What did you start Stop Rush?

Stop Rush, I initially rolled it out in late 2009 and early 2010. At the time, the Beck work was doing well. I thought that in dealing with advertisers, some really appreciated being educated about where their ads were running. The ad market took care of this. The word "boycott," it's very rare that I called for a boycott or attacked a company. For the most part, I let advertisers know where there money was being spent, where it was going, and what it was helping. They made the decision themselves.

I started Stop Rush in 2009, 2010, and when I went to register the domain, I saw that Rush owned StopRush.com

I've noticed things like that. Corporations often do that. In looking at a story about JC Penney, you see they own hundreds of corporate domains... BoycottJCPenney.com, UnionizeJCPenney.com, etc.

Yeah. Rush didn't have StopRush.org, so that's what I got. Obviously at the time, I was a law student, and I was working very much on the Beck effort, and I was still managing law school. The Beck work was working, and I kind of froze the Rush work, and experimented with it a little, to get a sense of who Rush's advertisers were and what their comfort level with him was. It was definitely valuable, and I am glad I spent some time doing it. It has informed the work I am doing now.

When did you have a sense that Sandra Fluke might have been Rush's Waterloo?

It was very clear late evening Friday, early Saturday that this was different and distinguishable. There have been temporary flare ups with Rush before. This was clearly not one of those. It has a different dynamic, and became a business problem, as opposed to people just being angry.

Rush had spent three full days digging in. I started talking to advertisers on Thursday, and got a lot of feedback on Friday, and I knew a lot of movement was taking place. This was important to think about from a business perspective. The very clearest example was when Carbonite came out on Saturday night. That was significant because they had been one of his biggest advertisers, and they announced their drop after the so called apology. They said the apology didn't matter. Rush had exposed himself as too volatile to do business with.

And on the top of his website, there was a blank box that said "ADVERTISEMENT." That was where Carbonite has been for a long, long time. It was a very clear sign that we were dealing with something new.

The only ads I saw were for Rush's own products. I was almost surprised to see that his "Club Gitmo" clothing line hadn't dropped him!

[Laughs.] Yeah.



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60 comments
runnersoon
runnersoon

Sorry about the typos. In short your belief in a controlled state is dis-functional. Human nature desires freedom from a culture as yours.

runnersoon
runnersoon

Don't you know...Communism is dead. It kill takes life from the earth and turns it into dung...

lau019
lau019

lets find out who this guy is an dig up his dirt,, go back to where you came from you commie

Endoxa52
Endoxa52

Just what this country needs...more censorship. Maybe Mr. Carusone is a figment of the past, for he would have been a shining star at Pravda. Whoops, you dropped a black bar, Angie.

njsackman
njsackman

is he spreading aids in neighborhoods? was he ever on welfare? does he have a drug problem? a criminal record? have student loans unpaid? any disgruntle  boyfriends? who pays him? any connections with the white house? who are his partners? who r his advertisers? let the games begin!!!!

njsackman
njsackman

we must strengthen our love for free speach & go after this guy and his secret donors... its a joke he has secret donors!!! we must expose everything about this commie, his family, friends everything he does every day...lets see if obama is behind him...

jp
jp

Sounds like Angelo needs to get a real job; like objective journalism, instead of muckraking.

James Black
James Black

Is this Brock's new 'partner?'  And they're both working for that degenerate Nazi Stooge, George Soros?  Beck already has more *paid* subscribers than Oprah can ever conjole her fan club into watching dOWN for free.  The advertisers who dumped "Hillbilly Heroin Limbaugh" were replaced so quickly he couldn't take them back even if he wanted to; Carbonite is sinking fast.  Media Matters is a weird cult of Otards run by a paranoid drama queen, David Brock, and financed by Soros.

DCM
DCM

Caruson and Media Maters arefunder by the socialist Soros, who isspending billions to distroy America.  These people are the true enimies of the United States Constitution and freedom.  Just remember in November, VOTE against all "D's", wash them all out of DC.

OIL is the FUEL of the ENGINE of FREEDOM.VOTE for FREEDOMOIL = American JOBSOIL = American INDUSTRYOIL = American FREEDOM

Progressivespu
Progressivespu

Fluke is a cheap whore:  not a sexual one, but a political whore for the progressives and the Democratic party.

I'd much prefer to be a sexual whore.  At least you demonstrate some self-respect that way.

ERN
ERN

Do we have a list of Radio Stations that broadcast Rush's Shows?  I think we need to approach them as we have the advertisers.

Jim D
Jim D

One thing you libturds need to learn is boycotts work both ways. Back in 2009 I fired geico over the Beck attack which was justified because we now know oboma is a racist. And I am in the works right now of getting ins quotes so I can fire allstate in the next week. I will not knowingly finance you peoples liberal bullshit nor will I pay for your birth control.

Truth Has No Agenda
Truth Has No Agenda

The fact that you never mention that idiot gets paid to lie & hate by Media Matters tells the world you are not and never will be a journalist. Maybe Steven just wanted a date from him. If you are right about your side you would not lie about. You have to lie because you know you are wrong.

Truth Has No Agenda
Truth Has No Agenda

A gay hate monger Angelo Carusone who can't pass the bar exam after spending $250,000 on a liberal education from the university of Madison who gets paid by billionaire George Soros who gives millions to Media Matters who its founder is yet another gay hate monger David Brock. They get paid to lie & attack conservatives. They practice economic terrorism just like their BOSS GEORGE SOROS. He has destroyed several countries by crashing their money. Soros made a billion in one day by crashing the bank of England in 1992 (Google it). I have to ask why gay people call themselves gay when they all seem to be really filled with hate and are some of the worst hate spewing people on twitter and Facebook . It's just sad and pathetic. I feel sorry for you people.

Depaulin2001
Depaulin2001

Great article! Rocky, public discourse has a significant influence in our society. Rush, Beck, et. al., have "convinced" a large segment of our society to hate. Carusone is simply pointing out, and magnificently successfully, that words have consequences. Why do you think the 30+ advertisers pulled out? Why do you think Beck was stopped and his vile hate-spewing show pulled from Fox! Words have consequences.

Rocky
Rocky

Angelo Caruson is a fascist, free-speech-hating Democrat. He also supports the misogynists at MSNBC like Ed Schultz and Chris Matthews. Liberal Nazis are too lazy to know that if you don't like someone, change the freakin' station!

VoteLoud
VoteLoud

Bring it on...

Those that  boycotted Rush's advertisers' businesses enjoyed the unintended consequences of liberalism.

They pulled their ads... their businesses crashed...

Lots of "working people" lost their jobs!

Why does the left hate the poor and working people in the name of attacking the job creators?

I hope it is just naive!

Or will they sell out their own for political gain?

jmundstuk
jmundstuk

Check out @shoqcrowd1@googlegroups.com. There is a group working on Google Docs on advertisers and radio stations. Lots of stations that need contact numbers, etc. 

David
David

You may want to spend some of your insurance savings on an education - particularly spelling and punctuatuion.

If you need to change insurance that often ... the problem just might be with you.  Someone who keeps getting bitten by neighborhood dogs should look more to himself as the cause ... not the dogs.

jmundstuk
jmundstuk

Great. That is in fact how it works. Use your dollars as votes.

Steven W. Thrasher
Steven W. Thrasher

First sentence of the piece: "​Angelo Carusone is the Director of Online Strategy for Media Matters for America." Is it asking too much for you to just read the first sentence? 

sodakhic
sodakhic

Why do you think Air America went under faster than one of Obamas bullet trains to nowhere? Vile hate from Rhodes, Malloy, Miller and Press.

Jabarth
Jabarth

His show wasn't pulled, he never signed another contract. He did have more people watch his show at 5pm then other hosts on other networks did at prime time. So I guess Mr Cruton didn't do his job right.

Whoopsie
Whoopsie

Pretty sure Beck was stopped because he's nuts.  Pretty sure Limbaugh survives and is more powerful from this campaign, especially now that it's partisan objectives are becoming ever more transparent.  And please explain how anyone has been convinced to "hate" by some of these folks.  Please define what you mean by hate.  Seems to me that the folks who use this slur freely are really just upset that someone else might aggressively challenge their own pre-conceived notions.  Thoughtcrime lives, I guess.

Guest
Guest

Yeah like those freedom loving people on the Christian right who we've been telling the same thing to for decades. And you're a Nazi. When will you idiots finally just accept this?

Suzanne
Suzanne

Oh, Rocky, Rocky,

Free speech does not mean freedom from criticism. As much as you would like it to mean that, it doesn't.

Everyone, including you, Rush, and the Right Wing, are free to say whatever you want. And we're free to say we find what you're saying vile, and we will not financially support it. We are free to tell advertisers that if they financially support vile free speech, we will not financially support them. Then it's up to his advertisers to decide if financially supporting hate speech is worth it.

Like you said, we do understand that if we don't like it, we are free to change the channel. But we are also free to inform the advertisers that we're going to change the channel.

We're making it so that hate-speech is no longer profitable. Everyone's free to spew hate-speech, but make millions of dollars off of it at the expense civility is unacceptable to us and we won't financially support it. Get it?

That is the free market of free speech. Welcome to it.

Michael Demmons
Michael Demmons

I would call him free-speech loving. Rush and Beck can say what they want. Carusone's only showing that speech has consequences. You calling him a Nazi is the same thing as him calling Beck and Rush idiots (well, except that he is telling the truth, but whatever).

That you didn't even notice the hypocrisy in your comment is freakin' hilarious!!!  LOL!

VoteLoud
VoteLoud

Classic liberal... blame the people not the dogs!

Sneakpreview1
Sneakpreview1

You might need to put your sanctimonious self back in the basement and let the big boys have a conversation, cupcake. Blame the victim, not the aggressor - your so liberally enlightened aren't you?

Toddz
Toddz

David, it's never wise to pick on someone for their spelling with an error in your own post!

timsky969
timsky969

 Tough to see straight with Odummys willy shoved down your throat

Gabster009
Gabster009

Hey Truth has no agenda, try  googling  your own little truth Angelo Carusone  did not fail the bar moron, he did not follow that  course because he  probably did not want to work for  evil greedy conservatives such as your self.   And regarding the title of the article in its self   i think it sounds  great.  A young  educated  man  fighting for the future generation, so we do not have to sit back and watch corrupt  tv/radio personalities spew hate and be rewarded with huge pay checks for doing so.  It  sounds like you are way too concerned with Mr. Carusone's sexuality, if your soo interested in  him just google his name, you can stare at it all day long. "Gay"  "Straight"  What the hell does that have  to do with the mans job?  People like you..old timers who  drilled this country into the ground should just  be quiet.   Enjoy your moment to shine on a response  board to his article, but the reality  is TRUTH HAS NO AGENDA ... i do not see the article  with your name on it. Too chicken to post your name after all the un necessary comments you posted?  Feel embarrassed?

Truth Has No Agenda
Truth Has No Agenda

And you think everyone knows who Media Matters is and who is paying them to do what. You say it like it's a legitimate business it's not and never will be. The founder David Brock is mentally unstable and carries guns around with him illegally in DC. He sees monsters after him all the time. Guess he feels guilty because he knows he is lying. He went from ultra conservative writing a book about Hillary Clinton tearing her apart to a uber left wing-nut progress crazy person in less than 10 years. Are most gay people unstable? Maybe that is really his problem. I am sure one day soon we will be reading about Brock doing himself in soon. I know Angelo is pretty unstable too by his tweets. We might be reading about him someday too. It would not surprise me.

Jonnyreckless
Jonnyreckless

 What exactly is nuts about Beck, I really like his philosophy on a multitude of subjects. I never heard of him until a few years ago and started listening to him at work. Pretty soon everyone was addicted to his words of wisdom.

njsackman
njsackman

hey dope...when we stop bombing people, killing babies, strapping bombs on our selves, stopping free speech, allowing the gov. to take over our lives, trash our constitution, oh i'm sorry these r the things u commie libs love to do, plus back  the people who do these things all over the world!!!!

Whoopsie
Whoopsie

This comment makes no sense.  WTH are you trying to say?

TyS
TyS

 It must break your heart to learn that Rush's audience has grown since this hysteric manufactured story was released.

Jonnyreckless
Jonnyreckless

 So you libs also hate Bill Maher's raunchy degrading comments towards women

Whoopsie
Whoopsie

So am I to assume you are also in favor of shutting down the "hate speech" on the left also?  Or are you just concerned about it when it conflicts with your point of view?

Endoxa52
Endoxa52

I don't recall Beck or Limbaugh, or any notable Conservative, going after advertisers on Air America...if they had any.

njsackman
njsackman

hey dope...when u mess with free speech & threaten the constitution then you will be resisted by good Americans...punks like you r afraid of the free market dictating  popular demand, carusone & the liberals can't compete in the public domain so u try to strong arm the masses just like in communism countries!...u dope! are a true NAZI & people like u must be defeated!

bx42
bx42

You mean consequences only for conservatives right?  As far as I see, Liberals are never held accountable for what slides out of their slimy mouths.

TyS
TyS

 spending years organizing coordinated attacks against people who advertise on Limbaugh's show is hardly "free-speech loving"

VoteLoud
VoteLoud

 Evil greedy conservatives....

Young man, there are two forms of "Socialism"... Communism and Fascism....

Care to discuss evil and greedy?

Either you got your degree in Economics in Government Primary school... or get your news from comedians!

Whoopsie
Whoopsie

Jiminy, a goldmine here? Once again, pot meet kettle Gabster009:  "but the reality  is TRUTH HAS NO AGENDA ... i do not see the article  with your name on it. Too chicken to post your name after all the un necessary comments you posted?  Feel embarrassed?"

njsackman
njsackman

your kind loves the needle...do some overdosing u would be helping America rid us of diseases!

njsackman
njsackman

hey jerkoff why don't u do what people like u do best & stick a needle in your arm & overdose! u will be doing America many good deeds...u r all freeloaders!

Sneakpreview1
Sneakpreview1

And I'm spot on when I call out you left wing retards( sorry retards) for the backwards asshats you are. Free speech for me, but not for thee!! The calling cards of the neanderthal left are always so obvious even to 3rd graders such as yourself - Now get off Mom and go to work. If there ever was a panty waist bitter clinger, it's Moochies boy who has yet to grow into a man - yeah, someone to look up too - what an ass

Sneakpreview1
Sneakpreview1

Knuckles drag much neanderthal? Big man behind the keyboard - OOhhh watch out, he's most likely a gaia retard dancing in the sun naked for all to see - go hump on your buttbuddy carusone the Cueer

Sneakpreview1
Sneakpreview1

Your the fkn troll, asshat. How can you defend someone who is out to instill FEAR in advertisers like the wonderful Alinsky taught them too just because you don't like what's being said? Your a retard of the highest order right along with the douchbag Carusone.

Jonnyreckless
Jonnyreckless

 I don't know of anyone afraid of homosexuals, why does these same topics keep cumming up. Why are people so angry that our country is going to hell. Just let Obama complete his mission so nobody has to work anymore. We can all ride bikes around town and be gay. We can genetically modify people and food so who gives a shit about anything. We can suck the fetuses out of women and eat that for protein.

Whoopsie
Whoopsie

Pot, meet kettle: "A hundred times a day when we go mocking our neighbour we are really mocking ourselves; we abominate in others those faults which are most manifestly our own, and with a miraculous lack of shame and perspicacity, are astonished by them." -Montaigne.

Truth Has No Agenda
Truth Has No Agenda

Rush has over 18,000 advertisers. So some gay limp wrist asshole dropped Rush. It less that .002%. He turns down advertisers everyday. When we take care of everything you all better crawl back under your rock. You won't like what happens. You freaks are less that 2% of the population. Maybe we should allow Sharia Law to deal with your kind.

Ben
Ben

"I have to ask why gay people call themselves gay when they all seem to be really filled with hate and are some of the worst hate spewing people on twitter and Facebook ."- Truth Has No Agenda

"A hundred times a day when we go mocking our neighbour we are really mocking ourselves; we abominate in others those faults which are most manifestly our own, and with a miraculous lack of shame and perspicacity, are astonished by them." -Montaigne.

"I know Angelo is pretty unstable too by his tweets."- Truth Has No Agenda

No shit, Montaigne.

Guest
Guest

And go figure, you're a homophobe to boot? Obama was spot on when he called you turds bitter clingers. 

Guest
Guest

Obvioulsy Keith Jablow has taken up space in that tiny brain of yours.

Al Swearengen
Al Swearengen

Wow, a nasty, unhinged, homophobic rightwing asshole defending a nasty, unhinged, homophobic rightwing asshole.  Imagine our surprise. /yawn

Go back to the nursing home with the other Republicans, Grandpa.  Enjoy your dying shithole of a party because no one young would be caught dead near it.  Nothing you, Rush, Mitt, even God herself can do about it.  You fuckers have poisoned your own well.  Drink up morons.

palinisamoron
palinisamoron

Awww, do you have butthurt cuz your buddy Limpblob's getting his comeuppance? And bonus points for homophobia too! Stay classy troll. 

Maxpizzazz
Maxpizzazz

When do liberals make sense? I stopped trying to have intelligent conversation with liberals a long time ago.

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