CEO and founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg has reportedly lost $7.2 billion after several companies pulled out of Facebook advertisements. The companies which have boycotted promotion on the social media platform include Unilever which said that it would stop spending money on Facebook this year.
In addition, major brands like Verizon communication and Hershey’s have accounted for huge shares in the company’s revenue have also backed off. For the moment, Coca Cola has also ‘paused’ all its social media adverts for 30 days.
These issues regarding adverts have led to a jump in the market value of the company in the wake of its shares falling by 8.3 per cent on June 26. Louise Vuitton’s Bernard Arnault who overtook Zuckerberg to become the third richest man on the internet is only behind Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Microsoft’s Bill Gates. The share price drop eliminated $56 billion from Facebook’s market value and pushed Zuckerberg’s net worth down to $82.3 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
In recent months, demands for avoiding adverts on Facebook have grown with rights group slamming the social media platform for not taking effective action against hate speech, racist posts, paid political advertisements with hyper targetting users. Also, Facebook has also been pulled up after Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm based in London, used user data to target voters during the 2016 US Presidential elections.
In response to that, Facebook on Friday (June 26) announced new measures and a change in its policy to deal with hate speech and voter suppression in the lead up to the 2020 US Presidential elections. “There are no exceptions for politicians in any of the policies I’m announcing here today,” Zuckerberg said.
To fight voter suppression, the firm said, “During a pandemic when people may be afraid of going to polls, sharing authoritative information on voting by mail will be especially important. We’ll be showing the Voting Information Center at the top of the Facebook and Instagram apps over the coming months.”
This will allow voters to discuss information around voting and will offer links to discuss the issue.