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Unilever to stop advertising products on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

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Unilever has announced that it will halt ads on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, citing the spread of hate speech on digital platforms.

In a statement released Friday, Unilever said it would halt ads on the social media platforms through at least the end of the year, noting advertising “would not add value to people and society.”

“We are actively engaging with all digital platforms to make meaningful change and impact trust and transparency,” Unilever’s statement reads. “We have made substantial progress, and we acknowledge the efforts of our partners, but there is much more to be done, especially in the areas of divisiveness and hate speech during this polarized election period in the U.S.”

Facebook defended its efforts to fight hate speech, including investments in artificial intelligence and banning 250 white supremacist organizations from Facebook and Instagram.

“We know we have more work to do, and we’ll continue to work with civil rights groups, GARM (the Global Alliance for Responsible Media), and other experts to develop even more tools, technology and policies to continue this fight,” Facebook said.

Sarah Personette, Twitter’s vice president of global client solutions, said in a statement they respect Unilever’s decision and will continue to work and communicate closely with them.

“Our mission is to serve the public conversation and ensure Twitter is a place where people can make human connections, seek and receive authentic and credible information, and express themselves freely and safely,” said Personette.

“We have developed policies and platform capabilities designed to protect and serve the public conversation, and as always, are committed to amplifying voices from underrepresented communities and marginalized groups.”

USA Today

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