Reality TV star Kim Kardashian West is the latest high profile user to boycott Facebook (FB) - Get Report as concerns over the platform's failure to address hate speech, misinformation and election interference mount.
In a tweet posted on Tuesday afternoon West said she will "freeze" her Facebook and Instagram accounts on Wednesday as part of the Stop Hate for Profit campaign. West has 188 million followers on Instagram and her Facebook page is followed by 29 million users.
"I love that I can connect directly with you through Instagram and Facebook, but I can’t sit by and stay silent while these platforms continue to allow the spreading of hate, propaganda and misinformation - created by groups to sow division and split America apart, only to take steps after people are killed," she tweeted.
West has joined the #StopHateForProfit campaign formed by several American civil-rights groups, including the Anti-Defamation League and the NAACP, which encouraged advertisers to pull spending from Facebook to protest the platform's inability to fix contentious issues like hate speech, racial inequality and perceived political bias following the death of George Floyd.
"Misinformation shared on social media has a serious impact on our elections and undermines our democracy. Please join me tomorrow when I will be “freezing” my Instagram and FB account," she tweeted with the #StopHateForProfit asking users to join the ongoing campaign to hold social media companies accountable for hate on their platforms.
On Monday, actors Mark Ruffalo and Sacha Baron Cohen tweeted that they would be "freezing" their Instagram accounts on Wednesday. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio pledged his support for the campaign on Instagram.
The Stop Hate For Profit Week of Action that started yesterday includes a 24-hour Instagram “Freeze” on Sept. 16. The Week of Action will encourage these celebrities to post messages about the "harms that Facebook is inflicting on society and the importance of voting", the campaign website stated. The Week of Action will end on Sept. 18, with a call to urge people to vote and demand that Facebook stop undermining democracy.
In July, advertisers like Microsoft, Starbucks, Unilever and Target took a temporary break from Facebook in June, after widespread protests over racism and police brutality.
Companies like Beam Suntory, Ben and Jerry's and Coca-Cola have continued to pressure Facebook, especially as the presidential race heats up. However, some advertisers like North Face, Heineken and Puma among others have gone back to spending ad dollars on the platform since then.
On Sept. 3 Facebook said it will not accept new political ads the week before the election, remove posts that claim people will get coronavirus if they vote, and attach "authoritative information" about the coronavirus to posts that might use Covid-19 and the pandemic to discourage voting.
Shares of Facebook were up 2.36% at $272.42 at the end of trading hours on Tuesday.