To: Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and Sheryl Sandberg, COO
Facebook: Fire Joel Kaplan for leading a racist smear campaign
Facebook: Fire Joel Kaplan for leading a racist and anti-Semitic smear campaign against Color Of Change and other civil rights groups.
Why is this important?
A damning new report from The New York Times revealed that Facebook executive Joel Kaplan is leading a smear campaign targeting Color Of Change and other civil rights groups critical of the company. Facebook has been seeding right-wing hit pieces and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories based on racist tropes in response to our efforts to ensure the safety of Black users on the platform.
Kaplan hired a Republican public relations firm for the express purpose of undermining Color Of Change and other organizations who have held them publicly accountable for their harmful practices.
Facebook’s choices fed into the same far-right conspiracy theory that resulted in a pipe bomb in George Soros’s mailbox, along with a slew of hit pieces against our organization and staff by Breitbart and other outlets that cater to dangerous figures.
Through this investigative journalism we’ve learned that while we sat across the negotiation table with Facebook for years, Facebook’s leaders were giving oxygen to the worst anti-Semitic conspiracy theories of white nationalists to undermine our work. We have been working for years to ensure the safety of Black users by demanding protections for Black leaders doxxed by white supremacists on Facebook; working to ensure Facebook has transparent and just moderation policies; and demanding that Facebook put an end to racially targeted digital voter suppression. While we were operating in good faith to protect our communities, Facebook and Joel Kaplan were using the hateful tactics of the same far-right actors they were enabling on their platform. As long as Kaplan is working at Facebook, we cannot trust Facebook to combat hate on their platform, address online voter suppression efforts and disinformation campaigns, or properly conduct the public civil rights audit currently under way.
Demand Facebook immediately fire Joel Kaplan for his role in leading a racist and anti-Semitic smear campaign against Color Of Change and other civil rights groups