Microsoft dropped online store from CVN.org following Change.org petition; Macy’s, Delta, BBC, and Wells Fargo quickly followed Microsoft

Pressure is mounting on Apple to remove their online store from the “Christian Values Network” (CVN.org), after several other companies remove their stores this week, including Macy’s, Delta Airlines, BBC America, and Wells Fargo.

CVN is used as a fundraising tool by several anti-gay, anti-women organizations like Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council.

More than 19,000 people have signed Western Washington University student Ben Crowther’s Change.org petition asking Apple to remove their online store.

Crowther is no stranger to anti-gay bullying. It started in high school when he and his boyfriend were only the second gay couple to come out to their classmates. “The harassment got so bad I had to go the principal,” Crowther told Change.org.

In college, Crowther’s dorm room door was regularly vandalized with anti-gay slurs. “I no longer live in the dorms because the bullying was so bad,” he said.

“I applaud Macy’s and other corporations for stepping up and removing their stores from CVN,” said Crowther. “I don’t think Apple realizes how problematic it is that they are supporting organizations like Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council by keeping their iTunes store on CVN.”

Ben is optimistic about the support his petition is receiving. “I’m really encouraged by how many people have signed my petition on Change.org. I hope this is just an oversight on Apple’s part, and that my petition will bring this issue to Apple’s attention.”

This week Macy’s joined a growing list of companies backing away from CVN.

When asked why Macy’s removed their store from CVN.org, a Macy’s spokesperson told Change.org, “Macy’s serves a diverse society. As such, we are deeply committed to a philosophy of inclusion in the way we operate our business and support our communities,” Macy’s said. “We welcome all customers into our stores.”

Last Thursday, the Wells Fargo and Delta Airlines online stores were removed from CVN. Prior to removing their store, Wells Fargo was offering up to $300 to the religious charity of the shopper’s choice, money that could be donated to “Focus on the Family” or the Family Research Council. Delta offered $3.00 per ticket.

Jessica Beavers, a spokesperson for Wells Fargo told Change.org that “occasionally team members may act on their own to place ads on various sites that do not meet Wells Fargo’s brand and marketing standards. We requested the removal of this ad because it was not compliant with Wells Fargo’s brand and marketing standers.”