Maker of Ben&Jerry's, Dove pulling US Facebook, Twitter ads

Sunday, 28 Jun, 2020

The changes open the door for Facebook to flag inflammatory posts from U.S. President Donald Trump and other politicians as the social-media firm responds to a mounting backlash over how it polices political speech, including a growing boycott by advertisers. "When they got that market power, now they're censoring views". As recently as last week the company made clear that Facebook does not consider much of the language that Trump uses to suppress voting to be voter suppression, defending Trump's posts as being "legitimate debate".

Facebook is also going to take additional steps to restrict hate speech in advertising.

The changes announced by Zuckerberg on Friday included expanding its policy on election misinformation to prohibit posts found to be spreading hoax news that immigration officials are checking papers at voting places or threatening coordinated interference in elections.

'There is no place for racism in the world and there is no place for racism on social media, ' James Quincey, chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, said in a brief statement. The company also said it is increasing its enforcement capacity to remove false claims about local polling conditions in the 72 hours before the USA election. It said artificial intelligence helps it find almost 90% of hate speech before anyone flagged it.

The Voting Information Center will also contain links to posts that discuss voting, including posts from politicians, with Zuckerberg adding that including these posts is not a judgment on their accuracy, but an attempt to share authoritative information.

European multinational company Unilever recently pulled advertising from Facebook, Instagram and Twitter in the USA, sending the companies' stocks falling.

The company, which is based in the Netherlands and Britain, joins a raft of other advertisers pulling back from online platforms.

Meanwhile, in a statement to CNN, Hershey's said, "We do not believe that Facebook is effectively managing violent and divisive speech on their platform".

The consumer-goods giant - whose brands include Dove soap, Lipton tea and Vaseline - cited the "polarized atmosphere in the US", and urged social-media firms to do more to address hate speech and divisiveness online. The company, which owns brands like Dove and Lipton, said that "continuing to advertise on those platforms would not add value to people".

Our Supreme Leader has yet to comment on Facebook's decision on his preferred platform, Twitter, although lately he's also been trying to make Parler happen, since Twitter doesn't like him enough these days.

The consumer goods giant's announcement Friday comes amid the widening #StopHateForProfit boycott targeted at Facebook, organized by groups that want to pressure Facebook into adopting more aggressive steps to combat hate and harassment on its platforms.

The ice-cream maker said it would pause all paid advertising on Facebook and Instagram in the United States as of July 1.

Facebook's "core business model relies on amplifying hateful content to drive engagement and ad dollars, and their platform is too big to manage", Freedom From Facebook co-chairs Sarah Miller and David Segal told Gizmodo in a separate statement.

"We've developed insurance policies and platform capabilities created to guard and serve the general public dialog, and as at all times, are dedicated to amplifying voices from under-represented communities and marginalized teams", mentioned Sarah Personette, vp for Twitter's International Consumer Options.