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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 ZuckerbergBig tech companies report massive earnings amid pandemic The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump, Biden blitz battleground states Hillicon Valley: Big Tech hearing the most partisan yet | Rubio warns about foreign election interference | Trump campaign site briefly hacked 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 TrumpBiden campaign slams Facebook after thousands of ads blocked by platform's pre-election blackout Mnuchin says he learned of Pelosi's letter to him about stimulus talks 'in the press' Harris to travel to Texas Friday after polls show tie between Trump, Biden 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.