Demonstration to demonstrate effect of online advertisement
The Badger Herald, a student paper in Madison, WI, decided to accept a small advertisement which hyperlinks to a Holocaust denial outfit (at the moment it's directly to the left of the story above).
Seems it caused a fuss. This has long been a dilemma, but in this case, easily resolvable for anybody with knowledge and foresight.
In the 1980s the Hitler-loving* neo-Nazi Ernst Zündel was brought to trial two times in Toronto for "reporting false news." He got convicted twice and it took several years for the law he was charged under to be found invalid as a restriction on free speech.
Before being charged, you would have been lucky to come across one of Zundel's mimeographed-in-his-basement handbills at the back of a city bus, on the floor with a greasy (and/or snowy) footprint on it.
But when they brought him to court, they made a supastar out of him. His first trial lasted weeks, he had one of the most celebrated civil rights lawyers in the country, and the national news carried daily footage of him arriving at the venue on University Avenue downtown wearing his blue hard hat and literally dragging a life-size cross.
I don't recall the significance of the construction helmet but the cross' was obvious and offended just about everybody.**
The Globe and Mail — the northerly rough equivalent of the New York Times — ran headlines derived from Zündel's false testimony, as if it was being reported as facts. Afterwards there was a lot of soul-searching on the part of the Jewish community, especially among those who had pushed for the charges in the first place.
In short, the notoriety that Zündel craved was provided by the very people who'd rather him and his little pals would just go away.
I believe Zündel has since returned to Das Vaterland after spending some time in Tennessee (and in various prisons).
I haven't read whatever reasoning the Badger Herald has provided to justify its supporting the link as "advertising," but had it been my call, I would have told them thanks but no thanks for your big 75 dollars.*** Kindly carry your business — such as it is — elsewhere.
Because, like Zündel, they're getting a hell of a lot more bang for their buck now, a depressingly simple calculation to have made.
* One of his pamphlets was actually entitled, The Hitler We Loved.
** I don't buy the "martyrdom" of Zündel, Larry Flynt, and the like. Of course they should have prevailed legally under theories of free speech, but that doesn't make them martyrs, it makes them creeps.
*** Truth be told if I was a student editor — and I have been, in another lifetime — I'd take the cash (but not cash the check) and change the hyperlink to something like this or perhaps this.