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The Magazine That Birthed ‘Occupy’ Removed From All 1,300 Shoppers Drug Marts in Canada

Canada’s largest magazine retailer cited unspecified number of complaints over “graphic” content in Adbusters Magazine

VANCOUVER, BC, CANADA, July 21, 2021 / -- Shoppers Drug Mart, Canada’s largest retailer of print magazines, has “delisted” Adbusters and removed all copies of the magazine from its 1,300 stores.

Explaining its decision, the company (by way of its Atlanta-based magazine distributor, The News Group, Inc.), cited an unspecified number of customer complaints regarding three “graphic” pages in the July/August 2021 issue. One lists six corporations or related entities (e.g., ExxonMobil, the Sackler family) following an expletive. The other two show images of cows being slaughtered at a commercial abattoir.

Adbusters reached out to TNG for clarification as to the nature and number of complaints received, as well as the procedure for deciding to delist. Apart from noting that delisting is done “on a case-by-case basis,” it offered no further elucidation. “I think it’s pretty self explanatory…” was TNG’s final unsigned communication with Adbusters.

Adbusters was given no means of speaking directly with a representative of Shoppers Drug Mart. This is the second time that Adbusters has been pulled from its shelves.

Adbusters accepts no advertising or corporate sponsorships, and so relies entirely on newsstand sales and subscriptions. “I don’t think Canada’s biggest newsstand distributor should be censoring content,” says Adbusters founder Kalle Lasn. “Canadian magazine readers deserve better.”

In response to the company’s censorship decision, Adbusters is calling on supporters to rebuke the company in the bottom-line language it understands. It’s urging its readers and social-media followers to boycott all Shoppers Drug Mart stores nationwide using the hashtag “#BoycottShoppers.”

Adbusters, an independent, bimonthly publication of Vancouver-based Adbusters Media Foundation, has sparked some of our era’s defining activist campaigns, from Buy Nothing Day to Occupy Wall Street. To find out more, visit

Kalle Lasn
Adbusters Media Foundation
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