In 2016 a liberal hate group called Sleeping Giants popped up with the sole goal to harass advertisers that showed ads on conservative websites until they stopped advertising on those sites, quite literally sending mobs of online liberals to flood advertisers in a smear campaign, falsely accusing the conservative sites of "hate" and "bigotry."
The group’s original stated goal was to cripple Breitbart, the pro-Trump website whose former chairman, Steve Bannon, worked in the White House as President Donald Trump’s chief strategist.
To accomplish that goal, Sleeping Giants has waged an intense campaign to pressure Breitbart’s advertisers into pulling their ads from the website. It’s worked pretty much as designed.
Breitbart lost 90 percent of its advertisers over the span of two months in 2017. Sleeping Giants has both maintained its pressure on Breitbart’s remaining advertisers and expanded its focus.
Sleeping Giants began pressuring investors in October 2017 in Renaissance Technologies — a successful hedge fund — to pull their investments because the company’s CEO, conservative billionaire Robert Mercer, had a financial stake in Breitbart. Less than two weeks later, Mercer sold his stake in Breitbart and stepped down from the hedge fund.
Sleeping Giants also boosted Parkland student David Hogg and Media Matters’ boycott of Fox News host Laura Ingraham in March over a tweet she sent about Hogg. Rivitz’ group posted the name, position and email address of a Hulu vice president and encouraged its tens of thousands of followers to email her and demand that the streaming website boycott Ingraham’s show.
But even as Sleeping Giants became a major political player — described by The Washington Post as “the mysterious group that’s picking Breitbart apart, one tweet at a time” — the person who launched the group managed to remain anonymous.
No wonder he didn't want his personal affiliation with Sleeping Giants revealed.
The group’s modus operandi is consistent throughout its campaigns: use social media in cooperation with other well-funded left-wing groups like Media Matters for America and Think Progress to urge their followers to contact advertisers en masse – expressing their outrage that companies dare advertise with conservatives – until the companies relent and pull their ads. Equally consistent is their goal in organizing these social media mobs: pressure corporate America to blacklist conservative audiences.
Sleeping Giants’ first crusade was to drive Breitbart News from the web, starting in 2016. Despite being unable to do so, the group has branched out into threatening the advertisers of other leading voices on the right like Fox News’s Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly. Sleeping Giants also sought to bring pressure on CEOs to drop out of President Donald Trump’s consultative councils. More recently, the group joined with teenage anti-gun rights campaigner David Hogg to try to push conservative icon Laura Ingraham off the FM airwaves and cable news.
Rivitz, throughout the time he has been organizing boycotts against advertisers, worked in the ad industry. According to his AdForum and AdAge profiles, Rivitz has done copywriting work with Goodby Silverstein & Partners, a major San Francisco ad firm, and Wieden + Kennedy, a Portland-based advertising powerhouse, although he does not appear to be employed at either agency at the moment.
An example of how they organize their online mobs comes from their pinned tweet from December 2016, targeting Breitbart:
Here is an example of their online mobs (159K followers) targeted harassment campaign against Breitbart which has been ongoing since 2016, while Rivitz hid behind the mask of anonymity.
Note- There is nothing wrong with remaining anonymous online, some do it for safety purposes, some just because they like using certain user handles, but when someone creates a group which deliberately organizes online mobs in order to destroy the ability of others to earn a living, simply because they disagree with their politics, especially a group that has been reported on by major news outlets (Wapo), then the expectation of privacy via anonymity, is no longer valid.
Right now the smear merchants aka Sleeping Giants are campaigning against any businesses working with ICE, as seen on their Facebook page, where they are have targeted McKinsey & Company for harassment, and Microsoft's VP Jason Zander, while posting his email address.
Just a look at their main Facebook page shows multiple companies being targeted by this group right now.
SERIAL HARASSER IS NOW WHINING ABOUT BEING HARASSED
Now that we are caught up on who is behind the Sleeping Giants group and what they do in trying to destroy websites that hold different opinions than those of the liberals behind this group, we note the Sleeping Giants Twitter account is now complaining about Rivitz being exposed, claiming he is being harassed.
Sleeping Giants on July 17, 2018, after Mr. Rivitz was exposed as being behind the group, tweeted out to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, "Just [email protected] maaaaay have a little problem with harassment, doxxing and death threats on this platform."
First let me say any type of threats of violence are unacceptable. However, contacting him, whether it is via Twitter, on Facebook, or via email, and telling him your thoughts about Sleeping Giants' hate campaign against conservative sites, is no more than what his group has been organizing online mobs to do to advertisers for nearly two years.
As to his claim of being doxxed, first and foremost, doxxing is pubishing personal information, such as an address or phone number, and a look through the Daily Caller article, shows neither of things, just his name and his wife's who has referenced the group on her own Facebook page, which was helpful to the DC in identifying him.
So, doxxing is an exaggeration. Rivitz did create a group that has been reported on by major news outlets in 2017, with anonymous quotes from members of Sleeping Giants for the sole purpose of getting exposure, while hiding their identities. They put themselves in the public eye, turned themselves into what has been dubbed a "major political player," deliberately and with intent, so it is far different than"doxxing" some random internet users that have the right to expect online privacy.
Via Wapo in 2017:
Hence the group's anonymous nature. The spokesman says some leading members are employed by companies that might not take kindly to their employees engaging in a prolonged activist effort. On the other hand, many of its thousands of supporters openly identify themselves on Twitter when tweeting at Breitbart's sponsors.
The whining from Sleeping giants does end with the tweet shown above either. They responded to the Daily Caller's article exposing Rivitz as the founder of Sleeping giants, which said in its promotion "The @washingtonpost described Sleeping Giants as 'the mysterious group that's picking Breitbart apart, one tweet at a time.' We pulled the mask off."
The group responded with "Otherwise known as 'doxxing'. Well done, guys. Keep reposting this for maximum goon effectiveness."
Goon effectiveness? Wait..... isn't targeting advertisers with "goon effectiveness" what Sleeping Ginats has made into a business? Kind of ironic that they are complaining about their own tactics.
They are even going after the Disqus commenting system by retweeting someone accusing the Daily Caller of "sharing of private information and harassment."
Rivitz's name and that of his wife who has openly posted about Sleeping Giants is not "private information" when the group has already had major media exposure, and exposing someone behind a group that quite literally exists to harass others, is not harassment.
Sleeping Giants is not just complaining bitterly to Twitter about being it's founder being exposed, but they are also trying to get Twitter to terminate a new account with a user handle "Sleeping Giants Exposed," which states very clearly in their bio/profile "Matt Rivitz & his 'Sleeping Giants' have harassed thousands of businesses to chill political speech. We're are telling the truth about them. Not Matt Rivitz."
The new user is using Rivitz's image though, but since they are clearly stating they are "Not Matt Rivitz," they avoid the Twitter violation of trying to impersonate someone else, but Sleeping Giants is accusing them of just that and asking their 159K followers to "report this for impersonation."
ANP is very familiar with liberal groups, social media platforms and big techs ongoing campaign to try to bankrupt conservative websites, and Sleeping Giants, along with Media Matters and Think Progress has spent the past nearly two years on doing just that to a variety of conservatives websites, using tactics that are nothing short of harassment. The fact that they are complaining now the shoe is on the other foot, shows stupefying hypocrisy on their part.
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