Boycott campaign against Facebook is gaining strength with several top companies choosing to stop advertising on the social media platform. Among carmakers, Honda Motor has joined the campaign and has decided to pull out its advertisements from July.
In a statement issued by the Japanese carmaker, Honda said, “For the month of July, American Honda is withholding its advertising on Facebook and Instagram. We choose to stand with people united against hate and racism. This is in alignment with our company’s values, which are grounded in human respect."
The statement, issued by Honda North America, also said, “This is a deeply painful time for our nation and the world. In the midst of the terrible crisis that is the Covid-19 pandemic, we witnessed the disturbing and tragic deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, and all that this represents with respect to longstanding and deeply rooted issues of racism and injustice within our society.
Finding the right words to share with the entire Honda team about these issues is not easy, but we have to try. As a company, we acknowledge that we don't have all the answers, nor are we in a position to preach to others. But whatever words we choose must translate into action, and we must do the right thing."
Honda has joined Coca Cola and Unilever, two of the largest advertisers across the world, as the latest companies to join the campaign against Facebook for failing to adequately police hateful and misleading content.
Honda’s move comes amid Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s attempt to address advertiser concerns in a live question-and-answer session on Friday, where he announced minor changes to Facebook’s ad and content policies.
Facebook has tried to quell the boycott behind the scenes, and has reached out to advertisers to push back on the narrative that it doesn’t care about fighting hate and misinformation.
Facebook has been less effective than its rivals like Twitter or Snap to respond to what critics say are harmful posts from US President Donald Trump, as well as incendiary content that goes viral. Facebook, of these companies, is also the most susceptible to regulatory risk, and is already facing antitrust investigations from the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission.
(With inputs from agencies)