From April 1 2021, Socialike will no longer be sharing content to Facebook or running ads on Facebook for both itself and for its customers. We've also removed the Facebook tracking Pixel from our website.
This decision comes after growing evidence that the algorithms determining what people see on the platform amplify fake news and hate speech.
“Socialike no longer feels comfortable supporting Facebook by paying or sharing content on the platform” Chief Socialiser, Alex Ford said
“Facebook's algorithms weren’t created to filter out what was false or inflammatory. Instead, they were designed to get people sharing and engaged with content so they’d stay on the site for longer. People tend to share and engage with content that outrages or excites them. Disappointingly, this means that content promoting hate speech or fake news receives the most engagement. In fact, the more likely a post is to violate Facebook’s community standards, the more user engagement it receives - that makes Socialike as a company very uncomfortable.
“Facebook’s algorithms favouring polarising and inflammatory content has real world consequences. In late 2018 the company admitted it helped fuel a genocidal anti-Muslim campaign in Myanmar for several years. More recently, a study from New York University found that among partisan publishers’ Facebook pages, those that regularly posted political misinformation received the most engagement in the lead-up to the 2020 US presidential election and the Capitol riots.
“Facebook created an algorithm that amplifies hate speech and is aware of the problem but isn’t taking serious action to fix it. In 2021, that’s concerning. Pay incentives at Facebook are still tied to engagement and growth metrics, and there’s no clear way that they’re actually tackling the problem
In 2020, 1000 companies boycotted Facebook for the month of July as part of the Hate For Profits campaign. This included well known companies such as Starbucks, Disney, Stuff, Target and Lululemon. Two companies, Unilever and Clorox extended their boycott to the end of 2020. The boycott was a fantastic start, but we need to do more. Today Socialike is committed to being part of the change to create platforms that are safer for everyone.
“We're working with our clients to ensure their ads and content are published on platforms where advertising dollars don’t feed into an algorithm that teaches itself to promote inflammatory content. The response from our clients so far has been largely positive and supportive of our decision.
“There are other platforms out there that Socialike will continue to work with including LinkedIn, Google and Spotify.
“We're also seeing that Facebook ads and posts no longer deliver the results they once did. This decline in results, along with the tracking transparency changes introduced with iOS14 mean that Facebook is no longer a place where our customers can effectively reach, understand and engage with their audience, making our shift a natural decision.
“At Socialike, we have a set of values. Two of them are “Do good, be good” and “Be better together”. Facebook’s current obsession with maximising engagement over taking action to decrease hate speech on their platform means that the company doesn’t align with our values.