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Patagonia Latest Brand to Join Facebook Advertising Boycott

Ross Kelly

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Patagonia

Patagonia’s pledge is another blow for the social media giant as the #StopHateforProfit campaign gains traction.

Clothing brand Patagonia is the latest company to boycott advertising on Facebook as pressure continues to mount on the social media giant.

Patagonia announced it will cease advertising via the social media site and pledged its support for the Stop Hate for Profit campaign.

The campaign, which has been backed by a host of civil rights groups, asks brands to stop advertising on Facebook and Instagram for the month of July.

In a statement on Twitter, Patagonia’s head of marketing Cory Bayers said the firm will pull ads on both platforms immediately and for the duration of July.

“We stand with #StopHateforProfit in saying Facebook’s profits will never be worth promoting hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence,” Bayers said.

“For too long, Facebook has failed to take sufficient steps to stop the spread of hateful lies and dangerous propaganda on its platform,” he added.

Clothing brand The North Face was the first major retail brand to pledge support for the campaign. The firm has since been joined by Upwork, a US-based freelancing platform.

Patagonia’s pledge is another blow for the social media giant as the campaign gains significant traction.

Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), welcomed the announcement.

“It is clear that Facebook and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, are no longer simply negligent, but in fact, complacent in the spread of misinformation, despite the irreversible damage to our democracy,” he said.

“Such actions will upend the integrity of our elections as we head into 2020. We will not stand for this,” Johnson added.

Facebook has come under heavy criticism over its perceived lack of action to tackle fake news, misinformation and hate speech on the platform.

Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has vowed to address the litany of issues plaguing the company, and last week confirmed new features to label and highlight political ads.

Last week, Facebook was forced to take down Trump campaign ads following a breach of policies covering ‘organised hate. Political ads published by the Trump campaign featured symbols used by the Nazis to identify political enemies.

Research shows that Facebook is also one of the main platforms through which Covid-19 conspiracy theories and false information are being spread.

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Facebook’s main rival, Twitter, has made changes to tackle the issue and is now including fact checking notices on tweets deemed to be misleading.

The social media platform recently added a fact-checking notice on a series of tweets posted by US President Donald Trump.

President Trump tweeted claims that mail ballots in the November election would be largely forged and fraudulent. The decision to label the tweets prompted suggestions by the President that Twitter was “interfering” in the election.

Ross Kelly

Staff Writer

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