Digicel Join “Stop Hate for Profit” Campaign

June 30, 2020

Digicel said they will “cease all paid advertising activities on Facebook platforms globally for the month of July” as  ”the company takes a stand against hate speech online.”

Digicel Group has operations in 31 markets throughout the world, including Bermuda, and the statement below applies to all their markets, including Bermuda.

The telecommunications company is one of many international businesses who are suspending ads as part of the ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ campaign, which takes the position that Facebook doesn’t do enough to remove racist and hateful content from its platform. Some of the companies which have announced ad suspensions on the social media giant include Ford, Adidas, HP, Coca-Cola, Unilever and Starbucks.

A statement from Digicel said, “Digicel will cease all paid advertising activities on Facebook platforms globally for the month of July, it was announced today, as the company takes a stand against hate speech online.

“The move is in solidarity with a number of leading global brands who have moved to send a strong message to Facebook that enough is enough and force it into affirmative action instead of idly standing by as its platforms are used to spark and spread negative, damaging and violent messaging.

Commenting on the decision to join the movement, Jean-Yves Charlier, Digicel Group CEO, said; “Everything we do across our 31 markets in the Caribbean, Central America and the Pacific is with the aim of helping to create a world where no one gets left behind. And there’s no room in that world for the promotion of hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence.”

He continues; “In seeking always to lead with positivity and the spirit of inclusion, proudly today on behalf of our 7,000 wonderfully diverse Digicel employees globally, our customers and our communities, we’re ‘hitting pause on hate’.

“By standing together with the world’s best companies, our hope is that Facebook will be forced to put people above profits and do the right thing to help build a society where all people are respected and valued equally – as is their basic human right.”

“The ‘Stop Hate for Profit’ campaign is organised by the Anti-Defamation League, the NAACP, and other organisations who are advocating that businesses help them to ‘hit pause on hate’ by pausing their paid advertising activities on Facebook platforms for the month of July.

“Digicel will make a donation of US$30,000 to Jamaicans For Justice [JFJ] to assist in its tireless work to ensure the rights of all Jamaicans; that there is equal opportunity for citizens to realise their full potential and enjoy a sense of wellbeing; and that the culture is enhanced and respect shared.”

Facebook said, “We invest billions of dollars each year to keep our community safe and continuously work with outside experts to review and update our policies. We’ve opened ourselves up to a civil rights audit, and we have banned 250 white supremacist organizations from Facebook and Instagram.

“The investments we have made in AI mean that we find nearly 90% of Hate Speech [and take] action before users report it to us, while a recent EU report found Facebook assessed more hate speech reports in 24 hours than Twitter and YouTube. We know we have more work to do, and we’ll continue to work with civil rights groups, GARM, and other experts to develop even more tools, technology and policies to continue this fight.”

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