Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg have come under for being accused of doing little to nothing to spread misinformation, especially during election cycles. Now civil rights leaders are speaking out.
A letter from Al Sharpton, Founder & President, National Action Network (NAN), Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and Marc Morial, President & CEO, National Urban League (NUL)read, “National Action Network (NAN), National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and the National Urban League (NUL) would like to meet with you in person as soon as possible to discuss our concerns as Civil Rights leaders regarding issues of election security and voter suppression tactics.”
The letter continued, “Bad actors have identified the Black community as strategic targets on Facebook’s platform to propagate racial division and have implemented unregulated influence campaigns that weaponize a deeply painful racial experience in this country to marginalize our community, our voices, and our votes.”
As of yet, Zuckerberg has not responded.
Bernice King, the daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., also blasted Zuckerberg for referencing her father in regard to “free expression” a speech at Georgetown University on Thursday. King wrote on Twitter, “I heard #MarkZuckerberg‘s ‘free expression’ speech, in which he referenced my father. I’d like to help Facebook better understand the challenges #MLK faced from disinformation campaigns launched by politicians. These campaigns created an atmosphere for his assassination.”
Alicia Garza, one of the founders of Black Lives Matter, responded with, If #BlackLivesMatter to Mark Zuckerberg, then he should ensure that Black users are not targeted with misinformation, harassment and censorship on his platform and stop cozying up to anti-Black forces. Until then, his company will be remembered as an enabler of white supremacy.”
She also added, “It really lacks integrity for Mark Zuckerberg to even invoke in this kind of insidious way. Not interested in being your mule. You’re being deceptive + it needs to stop.”
Vanita Gupta, president of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights also said in a statement, “The fact that Zuckerberg would even invoke civil rights icons in remarks that justify his decision to exempt politicians’ speech from Facebook’s Community Standards underscores his willful refusal to accept how voter suppression has played out, from Jim Crow to now. He is in denial and so is his company.”
Sounds like Zuckerberg needs a history lesson.