Facebook's European Vice President admitted today that the platform is having trouble stopping the sharing of "hate speech" amid a growing boycott of companies that are advertising.
In a BBC interview, Steve Hatch said there was "no tolerance on our hate speech platform", but claimed that debates on such issues were "extremely challenging".
But today's presenter on Radio 4, Nick Robinson, accused Mr. Hatch of allowing "hate speech" on the platform and benefiting from such content.
Robinson claimed that Facebook "benefits from an algorithm that encourages hatred and encourages sharing," which founder Mark Zuckerberg "earned billions of dollars."
In an attempt to alleviate the allegation, Mr. Hatch struck back: "If there is hate in the world, there will be hate on Facebook."
Steve Hatch said there was "no tolerance on our hate speech platform", but claimed that debates on such issues were "extremely challenging".
Social media users who listened claimed that Mr. Hatch could not refute the claim that Facebook had encouraged "hate speech".
Other large companies are participating in the #StopHateforProfit campaign
Facebook is under increasing pressure when it comes to misinformation and inflammatory posts, including from US President Donald Trump.
A number of civil rights groups launched the #StopHateforProfit campaign last week to encourage companies to post Facebook ads.
California-based North Face was the first to join the campaign. The Anti-Defamation League, NAACP, Sleeping Giants, Free Press and Common Sense followed suit.
Starbucks, Unilever, Coca-Cola, Ford, Adidas and HP have also placed advertisements.
The campaign launched a full-page ad in the Los Angeles Times asking companies to boycott Facebook. The social media giant is said to have generated nearly $ 70 billion in advertising revenue last year.
"What would you do with $ 70 billion?" asks the ad #StopHateForProfit.
& # 39; We know what Facebook did. They allowed incitement to violence against protesters who fight for racial justice in America after George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks and so many others.
Facebook continues to accuse the ad of "closing eyes on suppression of voters" and "reinforcing white supremacists."
After Unilever and Coca-Cola, Starbucks is the youngest known name to suspend its advertising because the technology giant fears it won't address the problem.
Ford, Adidas and HP have also joined the mass boycott.
Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg has come under fire for doing nothing about the matter and has retained a Donald Trump post in which the president said during protests in the United States about George's death, "When the looting begins, the "Floyd.
Mr. Hatch told BBC Radio 4's Today program, "There is no profit with content that is hateful."
But he admitted: "The debates we see on these issues are extremely challenging and can be very, very far-reaching."
Mr. Hatch said the company had invested millions to address the problem.
He added, "Our systems now automatically detect and remove 90% of hate speech, and that's not perfect, but we know it was 23% two years ago."
"But we know that systems are not the only answer when it comes to combining the powers that Facebook has with the community on Facebook itself."
He said most people "have a positive experience" on the social network, but admitted that there is a "small minority of those hateful" because "if there is hatred in the world, there will be hatred." Give facebook ".
Robinson said Facebook has decided not to change the algorithm that encourages hate speech sharing and to spread hate.
Mr. Hatch struck back: “That is not the case. Of course, I find it terrible to see the events that have developed in the United States and that are growing all over the world.
“However, our systems work so that people get the content that is most fun and safe in millions and millions of cases, and that people can have a discussion.
“When we look at the US, the atmosphere is very polarized right now, and there are many, many problems, some of which are very worrying and very worrying that people want to discuss, and they are turning to online platforms.
"Debates take place, and these can often be challenging areas where people discuss them either in a feed or in groups."
Mr. Hatch denied that such discussions caused "real world damage".
When asked whether the racial unrest in America was "real world damage", he replied: "The debates we see on all of these issues have been extremely challenging and can be very wide-ranging."
The company joined several U.S. companies last week to stop advertising on Facebook (Image: CEO Mark Zuckerberg in February) due to concerns that the leading social network is unable to fight hateful posts
This happened when Facebook launched an advertising campaign to raise people's awareness of the fake news shared online and encourage users to question what they see.
The initiative, which was developed in consultation with the partner Full Fact to verify facts, calls on the public to check whether a contribution comes from a trustworthy source, to ensure that it reads beyond the headings, to pay attention to manipulated images and thinking about how it is created feeling.
"People who do wrong news try to manipulate your feelings," warns one of the messages.
"If it looks too good to be true, it probably is."
Patagonia's chief announced today that the company could stop advertising on Facebook "indefinitely" if the platform can't solve a "rampant" problem of "hate speech", anti-Semitism, and climate change denial.
Ryan Gellert, general manager of the outdoor clothing brand in Europe, said today that the technology giant's business model is "flawed" and has benefited from hate speech and disinformation.
As more and more companies support the #StopHateforProfit campaign, Facebook's share price fell more than 8% on Friday.
In response, the technology giant banned ads claiming that people of a certain race, religion, or sexual orientation pose a threat to others.
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