Whether it’s Instagram or Facebook, social media has been proven to have severe toxic effects. Despite this, its use is still widespread. Of the thousands of scientific studies proving their toxicity, none have convinced the platforms’ billions of users to ditch them. And if we’re being honest, it’s an almost impossible task at this point.
And now, people have decided to place the responsibility back on the platforms themselves.
As part of a campaign launched by Stop Hate For Profit—a non-profit coalition working to hold tech companies accountable for the hate spewed on their digital platforms—some of the world’s biggest names from Kim Kardashian and Michael B. Jordan to Leonardo DiCaprio have chosen to ‘freeze’ their Instagram and Facebook accounts for 24 hours starting on Wednesday in protest.
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I’m standing with the country’s leading civil rights organizations – including @ColorofChange, @ADL_National, and the @NAACP – who today have called on all users of Instagram and Facebook to protest the amplification of hate, racism, and the undermining of democracy on those platforms. I do use Instagram and Facebook, but I want it to be a force for good – not hate, violence, and disinformation. This should be an opportunity for Facebook to work with these organizations and the community at large to make it a better, safer platform for all. Please join me in not posting for 24 hours this Wednesday Sep 16. #StopHateforProfit #Instafreeze
“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,” Kim Kardashian stated in an Instagram post.
Alongside the one-day Instagram freeze, celebrities were invited to share a weeklong series of posts that call out Facebook for its role in “inciting violence, spreading racism and hate, and contributing to electoral disinformation”.
“Facebook wants you to believe that the company’s role in the death of the protestors in Kenosha was just an ‘operational mistake.’ But it wasn’t. It is just the latest casualty of Facebook’s choices designed to maximize profits,” the coalition said in a statement. “Our organizations, as well as other experts, have been warning Facebook for years about the problem of dangerous, potentially violent groups and individuals using Facebook. But time and time again they’ve failed to listen”.