Facebook To Lose A Lot of Friends Next Month
Image Source: Getty Images via Hypebeast
Facebook and its kingpin Mark Zuckerberg have been at the center of several scandals in the last few years, and the latest could be one of its most damaging yet. Earlier this week, outdoor retail giant Patagonia released a statement to join fellow outdoor retail companies North Face and REI, Verizon, and other brands to put a temporary stop on all Facebook and Instagram ads. This decision comes in support of the “Stop Hate For Profit” campaign, a growing boycott launched by advocacy groups including the NAACP, Anti-Defamation League, and Color Of Change, among others. This movement demands Facebook, a tech giant that brings in 70 billion dollars a year thanks to annual advertising revenue, to adopt stricter policies surrounding racist and hate speech on the platform.
This is not a new issue, as concern during the 2016 presidential election prompted many to critique the social media platform for spreading hateful remarks, fake news and overall misinformation to its world-wide network. Following a month of boycotts and protests in response to the death of George Floyd, Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, has seen a surge in user generated support for this initiative, including #BlackOutTuesday and #ShareTheMicNow which are aimed at magnifying Black profiles and amplifying their voices to spread the need for change.
June 17th marked the official start of “Stop Hate For Profit,” encouraging companies to pause all July advertising on Facebook and Instagram and stand in solidarity with Black users. This campaign, however, is not discouraging the use of such platforms. It is asking companies who join the pledge to continue to use their social media channels to fight hate and spread awareness, providing followers with ample resources to counteract the negative posts. It will hopefully become easier for positive messages demanding justice to spread if there is less advertising clutter among user feeds.
Many large companies, such as Vans and Timberland, are rumored to be considering following suit. It will be interesting to see how many choose to join the pledge and if it will have an impact on Facebook’s bottom line.
Posted by Michaela