ADL Joins With Other Groups Calling for July Boycott of Facebook

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Jonathan A. Greenblatt
“We hope this campaign finally shows Facebook how much their users and their advertisers want them to make serious changes for the better,” said ADL national director and CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. | File photo

The Anti-Defamation League, along with several civil rights groups, is calling for corporations to boycott Facebook in July over its unwillingness to ban hate speech on the social media company’s platform.

The groups, including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Sleeping Giants, Color of Change, Free Press and Common Sense, launched a full-page ad in The Los Angeles Times on Wednesday saying Facebook has not done enough to combat hate and disinformation.

“We have long seen how Facebook has allowed some of the worst elements of society into our homes and our lives. When this hate spreads online it causes tremendous harm and also becomes permissible offline,” ADL national director and CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement.

Noting that Facebook had “repeatedly failed” to act, Greenblatt said that “we hope this campaign finally shows Facebook how much their users and their advertisers want them to make serious changes for the better.”

Last November, actor and comedian Sasha Baron Cohen, upon receiving the Anti-Defamation League’s International Fellowship Award, ripped into Facebook and other social media giants for allowing hate speech to flourish on their platforms.

“I believe it’s time for a fundamental rethink of social media and how it spreads hate, conspiracies and lies,” Cohen said at the ADL conference.

Last October, the ADL accepted a $2.5 million donation from Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg in the aftermath of the anti-Semitic attack on a synagogue in Halle, Germany.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has faced continued criticism for not doing more to police its platform for false or misleading statements, including from U.S. President Donald Trump. Instead, the social media company has launched a massive drive to boost voter registration across its platforms as part of a “Voting Information Center” to help educate voters on how to register, find polling places or vote by mail.

On Thursday, Facebook removed Trump campaign ads targeting Antifa that featured an upside-down red triangle. Badges with upside down red triangles were used by Nazis to identify certain prisoners in concentration camps during World War II. Facebook removed the ads after the ADL complained about the symbol in the ads, reported The Washington Post.

1 COMMENT

  1. Let me guess: Mr. Greenblatt believes that he is qualified to determine what constitutes “hate speech,” and that if anyone disagrees with Mr. Greenblatt on such matters, that person per se must be a “hater.”

    Let me further guess that Mr. Greenblatt’s “haters” include anyone not on his politically correct side of the political aisle.

    My father was a medical student in Germany (University of Bonn) in the 1930s when the Nazis came to power. He told me how the Nazis dealt with expressions which they found abhorrent: by burning books.

    And by pulling down statues (e.g. to Heinrich Heine), just like the self-righteous are doing today in our own streets. (Only the ADL can state whether it officially endorses the destruction of statues to Washington, Jefferson and even U.S. Grant who fought a war to abolish slavery.)

    Censors like Mr. Greenblatt always claim to be acting for the good of other. Personally, I don’t need his help.

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