New York, Jun 2, 2020: Some Facebook employees criticize Facebook founder & CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s inaction over President Donald Trump post that suggested protesters in Minneapolis could be shot.
While arch-rival of Facebook, Twitter took the stand and placed a warning on President’s tweet about the protests “when the looting starts the shooting starts,” while Facebook founder Zuckerberg took the neutral stand and leave it to US authorities.
“I know many people are upset that we’ve left the President’s posts up, but our position is that we should enable as much expression as possible unless it will cause an imminent risk of specific harms or dangers spelled out in clear policies,” Zuckerberg wrote.
The tweets of President Trump evoked the civil-rights era by borrowing a phrase used in 1967 by Miami’s police chief to warn of aggressive police response to unrest in black neighborhoods.
On Monday, Some Facebook employees staged a virtual “walkout” to protest the company’s decision not to touch the Trump posts.
Dozens of Facebook workers took the day off by logging into Facebook’s systems and requesting time off to support protesters across the country.
“I work at Facebook and I am not proud of how we’re showing up. The majority of coworkers I’ve spoken to feel the same way. We are making our voice heard,” tweeted Jason Toff, a director of product management at Facebook who’s been at the company for a year.
“I don’t know what to do, but being a Facebook employee that completely disagrees with Mark’s decision to do nothing about Trump”s recent posts, which clearly incite violence. I’m not alone inside of FB.
Sara Zhang, a product designer at the company, tweeted that Facebook’s “decision to not act on posts that incite violence ignores other options to keep our community safe.
The policy pigeon holes us into addressing harmful user-facing content in two ways, keep content up or take it down.” “I believe that this is a self-imposed constraint and implore leadership to revisit the solution,” she continued.
Representatives for Facebook did not immediately respond to messages for comment.
Twitter has historically taken stronger stances including a complete ban on political advertisements that the company announced last November.
Over the weekend, Twitter changed the background and logo if its main Twitter account to black from its usual blue in support of the Black Lives Matter protesters and added a #blacklivesmatter hashtag. Facebook did the same with its own logo on its site, though without the hashtag.