A Monday report details the story of a seemingly nonpartisan social media network that is actually building an audience to push ads for Democrat candidates in the 2022 elections via a left-wing news outlet.
“The network, operating under the name Real Voices Media, uses apolitical, nonideological content to build up audiences,” the report said. “It then leverages the crowd on behalf of clients in what experts say is a potent persuasion strategy.”
Indeed, the messaging from Real Voices Media preaches unity.
“In this moment, connecting online is more important than ever. Yet too often today, Americans seem to be talking past each other,” the group’s website says. “On issues like our kids, our jobs, our bills, our health – these are the joys and challenges of everyday life, and we believe a lot more unites us than divides us.”
But the social media users had been duped, according to the report.
“Facebook and Instagram users in Michigan started seeing ads last month promoting stories by a new news site, the Main Street Sentinel,” Axios reported.
That news site has overwhelmingly far-left content, centered mostly in Michigan.
In many cases, the news stories themselves are favorable to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), who is expected to be in a heated battle for re-election this year.
Main Street Sentinel is owned by a company called Star Spangled Media LLC, which is based in New York and uses another company, Northwest Registered Agent LLC, as its registered agent. From the outside, it is impossible to know who is behind Star Spangled Media or Main Street Sentinel.
“The Sentinel has spent about $120,000 on ads since last month. Most have run on its flagship Facebook and Instagram pages,” according to Axios. “But it’s also paid to run dozens of ads through Michigan-specific pages overseen by Real Voices Media, including Stand Up 4 Michigan’s Middle Class, A Working Michigan and Michigan Black & Bougie.”
Real Voices Media oversees more than 400 social media pages, and received early investment money from Democrat strategist Will Robinson, according to the report, which cites Real Voices Media’s Managing Director Heather Holdridge.
“RVM pages have hosted thousands of Facebook and Instagram ads since 2019, with $500,000 spent on paid posts on the platforms, according to political advertising data from Meta, the social media sites’ parent company,” according to the report.
Real Voices Media did not return a Monday comment request.
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