Technology

Most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers have not joined the boycott: analysis

Most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers have not joined the boycott against the social media website and its sibling website Instagram, according to a CNN Business analysis released Wednesday.

Hundreds of companies have pledged to stop advertising on Facebook and Instagram as part of a monthlong boycott to protest how the social media company has handled hate speech and misinformation. 

But CNN Business’s analysis based on data from market research firm Pathmatics found that most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers, including Walmart, American Express and Home Depot, have not joined the boycott set to begin Wednesday.

Out of the 25 biggest advertisers on Facebook, only three — Microsoft, Starbucks and Pfizer — have publicly announced pledges to stop marketing on the platform. Those 25 advertisers spend about $2 billion, or about 3 percent of Facebook’s 2019 revenues.

CNN Business noted that the data found the overall boycott is likely to have only a limited impact on the company’s bottom line since Facebook’s 100 biggest advertisers make up only 6 percent of its advertising revenue. Most of its almost $70 billion in advertising revenue last year came from small and medium-sized businesses, according to financial statements. 

Facebook’s top 100 advertisers include AT&T, Walmart, Wells Fargo, Uber, Netflix, Domino’s and American Express.

Home Depot, Facebook’s largest advertiser that spent $178.5 million last year, told CNN Business that it is watching “very closely” the actions Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said last week the company would take.

Procter & Gamble, the consumer goods company that is Facebook’s seventh-biggest advertiser, said it has launched a “comprehensive review” of its advertising partners. 

“Where we determine our standards are not met, we will take action, up to and including stopping spending, just like we’ve done before,” Marc Pritchard, the company’s chief brand officer, said last week.

Wells Fargo told The Hill in a statement that it condemns “bigotry, racism and anti-Semitism and we are pleased to see Facebook take the needed additional steps to stop the usage of hate speech on their platform.”

“We are evaluating our usage of Facebook, like we do all advertising platforms, and will make a decision that is best aligned with the needs of our customers,” Wells Fargo said.

Andy Stone, a Facebook spokesman, told CNN Business that Zuckerberg has agreed to meet with the organizers of the boycott. Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.

“They asked about having Mark at the meeting, and we’ve since confirmed that Mark is able to join,” Stone said in a statement. “We’re waiting to hear back and look forward to the opportunity to continue the dialogue.”

Tags Facebook Facebook boycott Hate speech Mark Zuckerberg misinformation online advertising Social Media advertising

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