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FILE- In this May 7, 2018, file photo Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella looks on during a video as he delivers the keynote address at Build, the company’s annual conference for software developers in Seattle. Microsoft is requesting the Federal Election Commission’s advisory opinion to make sure Microsoft’s new free package of online account security protections for “election-sensitive” customers doesn’t count as in-kind campaign contributions. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

Virtue signaling hasn’t just been a trend among businesses, it’s now become an industry.

The amount of money spent by corporations on telling you that they support Black Lives Matter and that racism is bad is astonishing. According to AdAge, billions of dollars have been sunk into being seen as supporting the black community or political racial organizations:

Brands have spent a total of $1.6 million on racial justice TV advertising in recent weeks, according to data and tech firm Numerator.

In all, 21 brands ran racial justice ads during the 30 days ended June 23, according to Numerator, a threefold increase from the number of brands that did so throughout all of 2018 and 2019 combined. Those 30 days saw 1,286 occurrences of such ads, more than double the 500 for those two years.

Google’s YouTube was the biggest overall spender, putting $395,000 behind its racial-justice ads. Procter & Gamble Co. came in second with nearly $375,000 behind its corporate-branded ads. Then NASCAR with $312,000 in spending behind a racial justice ad that ran 46 times during the day of its Dixie Vodka 400 race. Unilever put $219,000 behind TV ads for its Dove and SheaMoisture brands.

Numerator is launching a new “Social Equality and Awareness Flag” to track socially responsible ad messages as they happen, including gender equality, racial equality, socio-economic equality and financial equality topics under that heading.

AdAge reports that Netflix has dedicated over $100 million to black-owned banks:

Netflix is shifting up to $100 million to lenders that serve the Black community in an effort to support minority lenders, Bloomberg reports. Initially, Netflix will move $25 million into the Black Economic Development initiative, a new fund that will invest in Black-owned financial institutions serving low-income communities. Another $10 million will go to the Hope Credit Union. It also pledged to allot 2 percent of its cash on hand to financial organizations that support the Black community.

Meanwhile, Coca-Cola has dedicated $500,000 to the Black Lives Matter Global Network, while Doritos has contributed $800,000 to outdoor advertising on behalf of the #AmplifyBlackVoices movement, an outdoor performance space dedicated to allowing black people to promote their messages.

Microsoft has planned to spend hundreds of millions over the next few years in order to grow black-owned businesses, black suppliers, and doubling the transactions with black-owned banks:

Microsoft also pledges to double the number of Black-owned suppliers it uses over the next three years and plans to spend $500 million on new suppliers. It also plans on doubling the percentage of transaction volumes with Black-owned banks, and create a $100 million program in collaboration with the FDIC to target Minority Owned Depository Institutions.

In addition, Microsoft plans on growing the number of Black-owned businesses it partners with by 20 percent over the next three years, and will provide $73 million to fund new and existing partners for their needs.

In communities, Microsoft will expand on its justice reform efforts, and focus on growing digital skills in Black and people-of-color communities by giving $5 million in grants to nonprofits and will establish a $50 million investment fund supporting Black-owned small businesses.

The AdAge article doesn’t just detail these corporations and their actions, the list is staggeringly long and you should peruse it yourself. As you read each company’s actions, the bill gets larger and larger.

While you do, however, take a step back and look at what’s really happening here.

These corporations aren’t just giving money out of the goodness of their hearts. They’re doing this because they want to be seen doing this. These millions of dollars aren’t charity, they’re ad dollars in and of themselves being spent for attention in the mids of the COVID-19 pandemic forcing them to squelch many of their ads in order to avoid looking bad.

Do they truly believe in what they’re dedicating so much money to?

Likely not.

As I reported in July, many corporations decided to take part in the Facebook boycott, refusing to run their ads on the social network, which actually was being done anyway in response to COVID-19. However, despite the ads disappearing off of Facebook in the name of social justice and combating hate, many of these corporation’s ads were appearing on a Russian social network that actually plays host to very real neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups.

(READ: Hypocrisy Abounds as Corporations Participating in the Facebook Boycott are Still Advertising On Russian Social Networks)

A popular picture that went around the internet shows how a corporation’s level of care changes based on how well this “virtue” sells in other countries featuring Bethesda Softworks’ various regional Twitter accounts.

Every dime from these corporations is a lie meant to make you believe they care and runs the dual purpose of seeing to it that they stay out of the crosshairs of these social justice groups that enforce a tyrannical rule on the general population by creating mobs against those who defy them.

It’s not just a trend, it’s “protection.”

Brandon Morse
Senior Editor. Culture critic, and video creator. Good at bad photoshops.
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