Be careful what you wish for: After Democrats complained that Hulu wouldn’t air advertisements bashing Republicans on guns and reproductive rights, Disney has announced an update to Hulu’s policies so that the streamer will now carry political ads.
The saga began after the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and Democratic Governors Association tried to purchase joint ads on Hulu on July 15th, but were rejected. “Hulu’s censorship of the truth is outrageous, offensive, and another step down a dangerous path for our country,” the three committees said in a statement to the Washington Post. “Voters have the right to know the facts about MAGA Republicans’ agenda on issues like abortion — and Hulu is doing a huge disservice to the American people by blocking voters from learning the truth about the GOP record or denying these issues from even being discussed.”
Afterwards, #BoycottHulu became a top trending hashtag on Twitter. Faced with the unusual demand that consumers watch more stressful, higher-priced advertising, Disney almost instantly capitulated.
“After a thorough review of ad policies across its linear networks and streaming platforms over the last few months, Disney is now aligning Hulu’s political advertising policies to be consistent with the company’s general entertainment and sports cable networks and ESPN+,” Disney said in a statement to Variety. “Hulu will now accept candidate and issue advertisements covering a wide spectrum of policy positions, but reserves the right to request edits or alternative creative, in alignment with industry standards.”
In case “wide spectrum of policy positions” wasn’t clear, Hulu will share political ads from Republicans, too. So congratulations everyone who pushed the #BoycottHulu hashtag, you have successfully made the Walt Disney Corporation even richer. Whether it will make a difference in the 2022 midterms or 2024 presidential election remains to be seen.