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Canada’s Big Five banks join Facebook advertising boycott


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Canada’s Big Five banks join Facebook advertising boycott

The top five banks in Canada have stopped advertising with Facebook, joining a global boycott in protest of the social media giant’s approach to hate speech on its platforms.Royal Bank of Canada, TD Bank Group, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Bank of Montreal and Bank of Nova Scotia all said this week they will join…

Canada’s Big Five banks join Facebook advertising boycott

The top five banks in Canada have stopped advertising with Facebook, joining a global boycott in protest of the social media giant’s approach to hate speech on its platforms.

Royal Bank of Canada, TD Bank Group, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Bank of Montreal and Bank of Nova Scotia all said this week they will join the boycott of Facebook’s platforms for the month of July. But the impact of the banks’ boycott is unclear, since none of the five would say how much they typically spend in monthly advertising on Facebook or its subsidiary Instagram.

The coalition has pressed Facebook to take a harder line on hate speech, arguing that white supremacists, Holocaust deniers, violent conspiracy theorists and anti-government militias have been allowed to post, form groups and recruit members on Facebook platforms.

“While Facebook claims to support ‘free speech,’ in actuality, they are allowing hate speech to run rampant,” NAACP said on its website last week.

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Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs and communications, responded to the boycott in a Wednesday open letter headlined: “Facebook does not benefit from hate.”

Clegg noted that Facebook has seen intense criticism in recent weeks for not intervening when U.S. President Donald Trump posted “inflammatory rhetoric” on the site. Facebook employees erupted in protest in early June, staging a virtual walk-out from work after the company declined to remove or add a note to Trump’s “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” post directed at protests in Minnesota over George Floyd’s killing.

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