On his “Forbes Magazine” blog, lobbyist and public relations-superstar Jeff Ballabon published a piece called “The 20 Most Ridiculous Things People Believe About The Hamas/Israel Conflict.” Within hours of the article going live, the post was taken down. Ballabon was given conflicting reasons for the removal of the post. The one reason he wasn’t given was the most obvious one: “Forbes Magazine” did not like the post’s pro-Israel content.
After posting the article the morning of August 8th, Ballabon began to hear from friends that it was gone.
A few hours later Ballabon got the official news:
Eventually, he reposted the article at the Gatestone Institute:
“Buzzfeed” asked about the pulling of the article:
Forbes has since given him “conflicting and changing reasons,” as to why they took down the post, the most recent of which was “It’s just a list of links.” “There was no discussion of style, there was no discussion of format…All of those things could have been changed,” Ballabon said. “The only thing that can’t be changed is the substance.”
He said he believes the impetus for its removal was that “it was linked to a very controversial issue on which they’re taking a side.”
“I always thought that’s what opinion columns are for,” he said.
Mia Carbonell, Forbes’ SVP of Communications, didn’t respond to detailed questions about the decision and said in an email only that “this post failed to meet Forbes’ editorial standards.”
Ballabon has been unable to access his Forbes contributor account since the post was removed. His future status as a Forbes contributor remains unclear.
“I don’t think what they did can be justified and I think that’s why they’re not justifying it,” he said.