Civil rights groups call for Facebook ad boycott

Civil rights groups call for Facebook ad boycott
© JOSH EDELSON/AFP via Getty Images

A group of civil rights organizations launched a new campaign Wednesday calling for companies to refrain from advertising on Facebook in July.

The Anti-Defamation League, NAACP, Sleeping Giants, Color Of Change, Free Press and Common Sense are calling for the pause to protest what they say is a failure by the Silicon Valley giant to make its platform less hostile.

An ad that ran in the Los Angeles Times announcing the campaign calls on corporate advertisers to “send Facebook a powerful message: Your profits will never be worth promoting hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence.”

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“Facebook remains unwilling to take significant steps to remove political propaganda from its platform,” Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the NAACP, said in a statement.

“It is clear that Facebook and its CEO, Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Senate panel advances bill targeting online child sexual abuse | Trump administration awards tech group contract to build 'virtual' wall | Advocacy groups urge Congress to ban facial recognition technologies Facebook to launch Fourth of July voter registration drive Hillicon Valley: Facebook claims it 'does not profit from hate' in open letter | Analysis finds most of Facebook's top advertisers have not joined boycott | Research finds Uighurs targeted by Chinese spyware as part of surveillance campaign MORE, are no longer simply negligent, but in fact, complacent in the spread of misinformation, despite the irreversible damage to our democracy," he added.

The campaign comes amid rising scrutiny on Facebook's hands-off approach to political speech.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been under internal and external pressure to take action against President TrumpDonald John Trump Trump responds to calls to tear down monuments with creation of 'National Garden' of statues Trump: Children are taught in school to 'hate their own country' Trump accuses those tearing down statues of wanting to 'overthrow the American Revolution' MORE's posts in particular, especially ones seen as glorifying violence. Twitter and other social media platforms have decided to flag those posts.

Several advertisers in recent weeks have already pulled back on Facebook advertising, which generates roughly 98 percent of the company's revenue.

The Hill has reached out to spokespeople for the platform for comment on the campaign.