The pressure exerted by civil rights groups and the boycott to which brands such as Unilever, The North Face, Verizon and Ben & Jerry’s It has had its effect on Facebook.
On Friday the CEO of the Menlo Park company, Mark Zuckerberg He said they will change their policies in order to ban hate speech in their ads.
What Zuckerberg said
The executive published a message through his Facebook profile in which he addressed a commitment he made at the beginning of June related to voting in the United States and in support of the movement Black Lives Matter.
In this sense, he said that he would work with groups of specialists to review the policies of the social network in order to find areas of opportunity to improve. Especially he referred to the publications relations with politics and possible infractions or violations of content policies, as well as promoting racial justice.
Now, in his new post, Zuckerberg said they will implement changes based on four pillars, highlighting one related to hate speech and advertising. Accordingly, it is established that Facebook will prohibit ads that affirm that people of a specific race, ethnicity, nationality, caste, gender, sexual orientation or immigration origin are a threat to the physical safety or health of any other person.
« (…) we are expanding our ad policy to prohibit claims that people of a specific race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, caste, sexual orientation, gender identity, or immigration status are a threat to physical safety, the health or survival of others. We are also expanding our policies to better protect immigrants, migrants, refugees and asylum seekers from ads that suggest that these groups are inferior or express contempt, dismissal or disgust directed at them, ”he said.
In this regard, the CEO of Facebook stressed that his company has worked on this issue forever, trying to defend the criticism it has received in recent weeks. In this sense, he argued that a recent study by the European Union showed that his firm « acts faster and eliminates a higher percentage of hatred in our services than other major internet platforms, including YouTube and Twitter. »
The list of brands grows
Zuckerberg’s publication is given in the context of the call to all advertisers on Facebook and Instagram made by National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in which he calls for a boycott during the month of July against the platforms.
To this call, the first firm to react was The North Face, by announcing that it would stop all activity and paid ads until there are « stricter policies » that provide greater assurance that something is done against the spread of hateful, misleading and violent material on both Facebook and all its platforms.
The sportswear and warm clothing firm owned by VF Corp joined Verizon, Magnolia Pictures, REI, Patagonia, Eddie Bauer and Ben & Jerry’s and more recently Unilever and Honda.
As we mentioned in previous opportunities, although it is still early to know if it will suffer pressure like the one YouTube experienced at the time, the block that is forming to put pressure on Facebook cannot be minimized, in fact, it is already having implications for its deal; this Friday afternoon its shares fall more than 7.5 percent on the Nasdaq index of the New York Stock Exchange.
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