A US evangelical group has used Facebook and YouTube’s advertising tools to target LGBTI millennials with ‘dehumanising’ video ads which feature ‘cures for homosexuality’.
Christian group Anchored North utilised sophisticated advertising capabilities on Facebook and YouTube to target youths they describe as having ‘secular world views’, Open Democracy 50.50 reported.
The group made headlines earlier this year for their videos which targeted LGBTI people with a ‘gay cure’.
By utilising social media advertising capabilities group was able to ‘pay to reach secular world views,’ Anchored North founder Greg Sukert said.
Facebook and YouTube said some of Anchored North’s ads contravened their rules against targeted content that disparages or discriminates against users.
Both companies removed some of the videos which violated their policies, though these videos had already been viewed and shared millions of times.
Anchored North says its target audience are 18-to-35-year-olds ‘being torn apart by darkness, by sin, by evil’ who are ‘leaving the church at an alarming rate’.
Slick and professional-looking video productions
The group’s videos are slick and professional-looking productions, and often profile people who consider themselves ‘cured’ of homosexuality.
One video called Love is Love profiles a young woman called Emily Thomes, who claims to be an ‘ex-lesbian’ and says Christianity helped her to ‘renounce’ the lesbian ‘lifestyle’.
‘It’s not gay to straight. It’s lost to saved,’ Thomes says in the video.
‘Emily’s story lovingly addresses the heart of the matter: that homosexuality is only one sin among many that manifests itself within a sinful heart. Only by the grace and mercy of God can we be transformed,’ it says in the description box below the video, which is still available on YouTube.
Anchored North are self-descrbid ‘next-generation evangelists’ who use ‘media and evangelism to reach the lost in a way that has never been done before’, according to the group’s website.
The group are registered as a tax-exempt charity, and have been described as ‘cult-like’ in some media sources.