Starbucks is reportedly considering whether to pull its social media presence from Facebook after it began receiving deluges of negative remarks to its decidedly “woke” posts.
What are the details?
According to a Monday report from the New York Post, the company is in the process of “evaluating their organic presence on Facebook.”
On Thursday, BuzzFeed News reported that it had obtained internal Facebook discussions in which employees reported that Starbucks may take down its Facebook page. At the time of this reporting, the page has more than 35 million followers. The company is reportedly considering the move because of the “response it’s gotten to its post about social issues.”
A Facebook employee reportedly told colleagues, “Starbucks is in the process of evaluating their organic presence on FB, and whether they should continue to have a presence on the platform at all.”
The Facebook employee’s message reportedly continued, “Anything they post (organically) in regards to social issues or their mission & values work (e.g. BLM, LGBTQ, sustainability/climate change, etc.) they are overwhelmed by negative/insensitive hate speech related comments on their posts.”
Starbucks, according to the insider, has reportedly struggled to moderate the tide of negative responses and cannot disable comments on its page.
The Post reported that if Starbucks yanked its Facebook page, it would be among “the largest companies ever to depart the platform.”
In 2018, Tesla and SpaceX CEO billionaire Elon Musk deleted both brands’ Facebook pages as part of the #DeleteFacebook campaign.
A Starbucks spokesperson told BuzzFeed News that the company stands “against that speech.” The spokesperson did not, however, confirm whether the company is considering yanking its Facebook presence.
“While some changes have been implemented, we believe more can be done to create welcoming and inclusive online communities,” the spokesperson added. “We work collaboratively with all companies we do business with to ensure any advertising done on our behalf is in alignment with our brand standards.”
A spokesperson for Facebook told the outlet that the company works hard to “keep hate off their pages.”
“We don’t want hate on our platform and neither do our partners,” the spokesperson said. “We have invested in technologies to take down hate speech, and we proactively detect 97 percent of what we remove. We also offer tools to limit this content from appearing on partners’ pages including ways for brands to control those who can comment on their posts.”
Rashad Robinson, who is president of civil rights organization Color of Change, told BuzzFeed News that he is “encouraged” by the idea that Starbucks would leave the platform.
“I can see other companies joining Starbucks — but unless Facebook is accountable to a set of rules and standards, then their exit from Facebook won’t change Facebook,” Robinson said in a statement.
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Author: Sarah Taylor
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