Unilever, Maker Of Dove Soap, Is Latest Brand To Boycott Facebook

Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a live-streamed company town hall that Facebook would ban ads that claim people from groups based on race religion sexual orientation or immigration status are a threat to physical safety or health [File Erin Sco

After a series of controversies regarding hate speech and delivering misinformation, Facebook has announced that the social media giant will flag all "newsworthy" posts from politicians that break its rules, including those from the President Donald Trump.

Shares of Facebook closed 8.3% lower, and Twitter's fell 7.3% after Unilever PLC said it would stop its US ads on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for the rest of the year, citing "divisiveness and hate speech during this polarized election period in the U.S".

Shares of Facebook dropped more than 8% on Friday.

He said the voting labels will depend on how good Facebook's artificial intelligence is at identifying posts to label.

The "Stop Hate For Profit" initiative comes amid the fallout from the death of George Floyd. Often, seeing speech from politicians is in the public interest, and in the same way that news outlets will report what a politician says, we think people should generally be able to see it for themselves on our platforms.

"We are actively engaging with all digital platforms to make meaningful change and impact trust and transparency", the statement said.

"Your advertisement purchasing dollars are remaining used by the system to raise its dominance in the sector at the expenditure of susceptible and marginalized communities who are typically targets of despise groups on Facebook", the letter mentioned.

Coca-Cola is pausing "paid advertising on all social media platforms globally for a least 30 days", it said in a statement.

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Earlier this week, The North Face, Patagonia and REI also said they had pulled advertising from Facebook.

#StopHateForProfit, started just 10 days ago, on June 17, by civil rights groups including the NAACP and the Anti-Defamation League, asked advertisers to boycott Facebook advertising for the month of July, in protest of the company's refusal to implement stronger policies and measures to stop the spread of hate content on Facebook.

Not long after Zuckerberg's livestream, Coca-Cola and Hershey said they, too, were pulling back.

In recent weeks, Facebook has faced increasing opposition to its position on hateful speech from one of its most important constituents: advertisers, which generate the bulk of its $70.7 billion in annual revenue.

Telecommunications firm Verizon and the US division of automaker Honda also joined the boycott, which includes Canadian retail co-op MEC and B.C. -based outdoor apparel brand Arc'teryx. The company, which owns brands such as Dove and Lipton, said that "continuing to advertise on these platforms at this time would not add value to people and society".

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. But starting today, the company is suspending all US-targeted advertising on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter through the end of the year. For politicians with massive followings, the organization normally takes the look at that their posts need to be permitted, but the organization applies simple fact-checks to untrue or deceptive tweets, and areas hateful types powering a warning.

The campaign demanded Zuckerberg take further steps, including "establishing permanent civil rights infrastructure within his company; submitting to independent audits of identity-based hate and misinformation; finding and removing public and private groups publishing such content; and creating expert teams to review complaints", said the report. Twitter said it respected the advertisers' decisions and would continue to communicate closely with them, according to the story.

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