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Coca-Cola joins Facebook boycott

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Stop Hate For Profit: Coca-Cola Joins Facebook Boycott


Coke and Unilever will not advertise on Facebook and other social media platforms for the next 30 days.

The giants have joined at least 90 others in the Stop Hate For Profit campaign.

Its aim is to get Facebook to take action against racism and hate speech on the platform.

Global consumer products giants Coke and Unilever on Friday joined a growing list of more than 90 advertisers that have temporarily pulled ads from Facebook but went a step further and pulled ads from other social media platforms over complaints the industry is profiting from hate speech. 

Coke said it will pause paid advertising on all social media platforms globally for at least 30 days.

Early on Friday, Unilever shook things up when it joined the ranks of Verizon and others who have backed the ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ campaign.

But the global brand behind supermarket staples like Dove soap, Hellman’s mayonnaise and Lipton tea went a step further than the others.

Not only will it stop advertising on Facebook and Instagram platforms in the US for the rest of 2020 - it is also staying away from Twitter. Twitter shares fell 7 percent on the news.

Citing “divisiveness and hate speech during this polarized election period in the US,” Unilever went on to explain in a statement.

“Continuing to advertise on these platforms at this time would not add value to people and society.”

In the wake of the death of George Floyd, the NAACP and digital civil rights group Color of Change have urged companies to pressure Facebook to do more to stop hate speech.

Twitter responded in a statement, saying it has developed policies and platform capabilities designed to protect and serve the public conversation and is committed to amplifying voices from under-represented communities and marginalized groups. And will continue to work with its business partners.

In his weekly Facebook video chat with employees, CEO Mark Zuckerberg didn’t address the protest directly but said Facebook will start labelling newsworthy content that would otherwise violate its policies.

Unilever, the maker of household brands including Dove soap and Hellmann's mayonnaise, said it would stop advertising on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter in the U.S. through the end of the year. The company, which is one of the world's biggest marketing spenders, cited a need to end divisiveness and hate speech during a polarized election season.

"Continuing to advertise on these platforms at this time would not add value to people and society," Unilever said in a statement. 

The announcement sent both social networks' shares lower on Friday, with Facebook closing down 8.3% and Twitter shares falling 7.4%.


Facebook will put warning labels on posts that break its rules but are considered newsworthy, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Friday. The new policy marks a reversal for Zuckerberg and comes as more brands pledge to stop advertising on the social network until it does more to curb hate speech and harmful content.

The decision opens the door for Facebook to label posts by President Trump, much as Twitter has done with some of the president's tweets about mail-in ballots and the protests against racism and police brutality. When Trump posted the same messages on Facebook, the social network did nothing, saying the posts did not break its rules.

Zuckerberg did not mention the advertising boycott, even as several big brands said they would halt spending on the platform.

Zuckerberg also announced a number of new policies aimed at cracking down on voter suppression and curbing hate speech. He said Facebook will ban a wider category of hateful content in ads, including those targeting immigrants. 

It will take additional steps to ban posts that make false claims about voting. And it will put labels on all posts discussing voting, linking to "authoritativeinformation."

Rashad Robinson, Color of Change's president, described Zuckerberg's announcement as "11 minutes of wasted opportunity to commit to change" and renewed his call to advertisers to pull their money from the platform.

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