We wrote last month about the launch of a ‘Stop Hate for Profit‘ campaign encouraging brands to pause their advertising on Facebook and Instagram, in protest at Facebook’s policies around hate speech and groups.
The boycott kicked off yesterday (1 July) with Reuters reporting that more than 400 brands are taking part, despite “last-ditch” meetings with Facebook executives who were trying to convince them not to take part.
The report adds that the organisers of the boycott, who include groups like the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), NAACP and Color of Change, will be meeting CEO Mark Zuckerberg for talks early next week. Is the boycott hurting Facebook in the meantime?
CNN noted that only three of the top 25 advertisers on Facebook last year – Microsoft, Starbucks and Pfizer – have announced plans to pause their ad spending, and that “even if all 100 of Facebook’s biggest advertisers joined in, they would account for just 6% of the company’s annual ad revenue”. But the campaign isn’t just about the direct financial hit to Facebook: it could have knock-on effects in other areas – for example where regulators are looking closely at how the company and other big tech platforms operate.