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April 19, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Angry viewers have often banded together to boycott advertisers because of their sponsorship of certain controversial programs. In 2008, the American Family Association and the Parents Television Council mobilized a boycott of CBS’s As the World Turns, produced by a division of Procter and Gamble, best known for its Tide detergent, to protest a scene showing two male teenagers kissing. While the protest may have had little to do with its cancellation just weeks later — its ratings had been declining for years — ATWT turned out to be the last soap opera produced by Procter and Gamble — which once produced 20 of them. But now, for probably the first time, a longtime soap-opera sponsor, the vacuum maker Hoover, is spearheading a boycott of its own. It announced on Monday that it’s pulling all of its ads from ABC effective Friday, April 22 because of the network’s decision to cancel All My Children and One Life to Live. In a statement posted on its Facebook page, Hoover marketing exec Brian Kirkendall said that the company is “making every attempt” to yank its ads from ABC even sooner. Kirkendall also said that Hoover has set up an email address,, where fans of the two canceled programs can voice their displeasure with the cancellation. He promised to carry their messages “to our contacts at ABC.” An ABC exec, who declined to be identified, appeared bewildered by the Hoover move. “Usually advertisers stop advertising when they want to cancel a show, not the other way around,” he told TV Guide. “We’ve said that the cancellation of AMC and OLTL was about money and ratings, so [the Hoover boycott] is just counterintuitive. You don’t save something by taking money away.”