Multiple high profile celebrities such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Kim Kardashian West chose to recently freeze their Facebook and Instagram accounts to call for a change in Facebook policies in support of the #StopHateForProfit Campaign. The purpose of this campaign is to hold social channels accountable for the mishandling of hateful and racist content, as well as to hold these platforms accountable for the spread of false news and information.
The campaign aims to spread awareness and bring attention to Facebook’s lack of responsibility when it comes to monitoring harmful and racist posts as well as posts with misinformation. In the past, closed Groups on Facebook have been tied to violence, and other Groups have been used to spread false information about COVID-19 and vaccines. There is a call for Facebook to clean up its’ platforms in order to tackle hate speech, violence, and misinformation. And should these high profile celebrities continue to boycott Facebook and Instagram, the company could be in some major trouble as Facebook shares have already dipped due to this one day freeze.
All this being said, Facebook has recently taken action to better regulate its’ platforms. The company announced new policies which will limit the spread of Groups giving out health advice as well as Groups tied to violence. The company stated it will no longer show health Groups and violent Groups in their recommendations. The company has also stated they will limit the spread of Groups tied to violence by restricting them from search as well as limiting how often their content shows up on others’ News Feeds.
Rodriguez, Salvador. “Facebook is cracking down on groups that give health advice and promote violence.” CNBC, 17 September 2020, https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/17/facebook-to-limit-the-spread-of-groups-tied-to-violence-and-health-advice.html.
Betancourt, Bianca. “Why Kim Kardashian West and Other Celebrities Are Freezing Their Social Media Accounts.” Harper’s Bazar, 16 September 2020, https://www.harpersbazaar.com/celebrity/latest/a34039420/kim-kardashian-freezing-social-media-stophateforprofit/.
McNeal, Stephanie. “Celebs Are Quitting Facebook and Instagram For A Day To Protest Hate Speech.” BuzzFeed, 15 September 2020, https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/stephaniemcneal/stophateforprofit-campaign.