Political Editors / Jan. 28, 2019

BuzzFeed CEO Has History of Promoting Fake News

Second Amendment advocate John Lott reveals the corrupt practices of BuzzFeed's founder and CEO.

BuzzFeed has been responsible for distributing two of the biggest fake news stories over the past three years. Perhaps blame for the Leftmedia outfit’s checkered history of promoting fake news can be laid at the feet of its CEO, Jonah Peretti. As Second Amendment advocate John Lott explains, Peretti is a man “who has a history of knowingly spreading false information. He has used fraudulent websites and email accounts to pose as people he wishes to defame.” And Lott further notes, “I was one of his victims.”

Lott tells the story of how Peretti created a website and email account designed to falsely impersonate him. “Pretending to be me,” Lott writes, “Peretti sent out hundreds of thousands of emails lobbying against the proposed ‘Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.’ This bill, which was being debated at the time (it ultimately passed in 2005), protected gun makers from abusive lawsuits that were solely designed to put them out of business with overwhelming legal fees. Peretti even purchased advertising for his fake website on Google, and the advertising promoting ‘me’ appeared at the very beginning of any search result on my name.”

Lott continues, “I was already relatively well-known in 2003 to those who care about the gun control debate because of my book ‘More Guns, Less Crime.’ Peretti sent emails under my name to convince people that I had changed my mind and come out against the act. The emails then urged people to ask their congressmen and senators to oppose the bill.”

Not only did Peretti pose as Lott in pushing against gun rights, he also posed as Lott “to advise people on how to violate gun control laws.” Upon receiving hundreds of angry phone calls, Lott began to investigate and soon learned who was behind the fraud. When confronted, Peretti wouldn’t admit his involvement, so Lott hired lawyers and “Peretti finally included a disclaimer on the website, stating that he intended to parody me. But he still refused to take down the website or stop sending emails.” Eventually, after a year and a half of more litigation, a settlement was reached and a formal apology was issued.

Coming back to questions over BuzzFeed’s repeated journalistic malpractice Lott asserts, “People are again asking how BuzzFeed could possibly push such ‘fake’ news against Trump. They need look no further than BuzzFeed’s CEO and founder Jonah Peretti.”

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