Verizon Withdraws Its Facebook Ads
US telecom giant Verizon said it is pulling back its ads from Facebook, becoming the largest brand to join the #StopHateForProfit boycott.
«We pause our ad placement until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us feel comfortable and consistent with what we have done with YouTube and other partners.», – told CNN John Nitty, Director of Media Relations Verizon.
Thus, the first telecom giant in the United States joined the boycott. Representatives of other major wireless carriers, including AT&T and T-Mobile did not respond to CNN requests for comment.
According to a Verizon spokesman Emily Vicker, Verizon’s intention to withdraw its ads applies to both Facebook and Instagram postings. When asked if the company would also suspend organic, unpaid content, Vicker declined to respond..
The decision follows an open letter from the Anti-Defamation League to advertisers released on Thursday. The email provided an example of a Verizon ad that ADL said appeared next to a Facebook post about conspiracy theory.
«We found that a Verizon ad appears next to a video in the QAnon conspiracy theory group that uses hate speech and anti-Semitic rhetoric, the letter said. – It claims that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) plans to start a civil war with concentration camps, coffins and quarantine in war zones».
«We have a strict content policy and we do not tolerate violation of it», – said Verizon.
Facebook did not provide CNN with a live comment. In connection with the announced boycott of advertising, Vice President of the Global Business Group Facebook Caroline Everson previously told CNN Business: «We deeply respect any brand’s decision and remain focused on the important work of eliminating hate speech and providing important voting information. Consultations with marketers and human rights organizations suggest that together we can be a force for good».
Verizon says boycott may last longer than other companies joining civil rights campaign.
Campaign «Stop stirring up hatred for profit» was launched last week by advocacy groups including the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and «The color of change».
The movement stated that it was «a response to Facebook’s long history of allowing racist, violent and inappropriate content to spread on its platform».
Stop Hate for Profit urged advertisers to stop ad placement during July and pressure social media to take stronger action against racist and hate content on its platforms.
«We applaud Verizon joining this growing fight against hate and bigotry by stopping ads on Facebook platforms while they sacrifice people and safety for profit, said ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. – This is how real change happens».
Earlier this week, ice cream makers Ben and Jerry&# 39; s and brands The North Face, Patagonia and REI are among the companies supporting Stop Hate for Profit.
Ben and jerry&# 39; s said they support the campaign and «all those who call on Facebook to take more action to prevent its platforms from being used to divide our nation, suppress voters, fuel the flames of racism and violence, and undermine our democracy».
A European Commission report this month found Facebook removed 86% of hate speech last year, up from 82.6% a year earlier..
The social network says almost all content that violates its policies is automatically detected by its systems and removed before it is reported..