This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
The billboard advertisement for the dating website "Where White People Meet" has been pulled due to complaints, according to the company.
The advertisement, featuring a stock photo of a white couple with information about the dating site, turned heads two weeks ago after it appeared near 5600 West and 2100 South. But on Tuesday afternoon, the Utah-based website announced on its Twitter account that Compass Billboards, which owns the sign, had pulled the advertisement due to complaints.
"It was NOT our decision to pull the billboard… What a shame," Where White People Meet tweeted, adding that it plans to find another place to advertise soon.
Sam Russell, the Bountiful man who launched the site in December, said Compass pulled the sign and did not allow Where White People Meet to renew its contract. Compass' position was that "they put us on a one-week contract and they exercised their right to pull that down."
Russell could not say for exactly how long he intended to keep up the billboard.
Compass did not specify how many complaints it received, Russell said. When reached by The Salt Lake Tribune, a representative for Compass Billboards could not comment immediately.
Russell said last week that it was "not racially motivated at all." He noted that the site doesn't limit membership to white people and has gained some members of color.
Traffic to the site exploded and briefly overwhelmed the servers the weekend after it began garnering national media attention. The website's membership rose from five on Dec. 31 to more than 1,000 on Jan. 4.
Besides finding a new home for the company's advertising in Utah, Russell said Tuesday that he plans on posting billboards for the site outside of the state.