Adidas and Puma pull advertising from Facebook

Facebook has seen a raft of new retailers including Adidas and Puma pull their advertising as pressure increases on the social media company to take action over inciting “hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence”.

The #StopHateForProfit campaign is rapidly growing as more retail giants announce plans to stop buying advertising across Facebook and Instagram.

The #StopHateForProfit campaign, kick started by civil rights groups including NAACP and Free Press earlier this month, set out to place pressure on large companies advertising with the social media platform, which it says is promoting “hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence”.

Although the boycott has already erased $56 million off Facebook’s market share value, seeing stocks drop by nearly 8%, none of these brands represent Facebook’s largest advertising spenders.

According to Pathmatics, none of the companies currently boycotting Facebook were even in the top 100 US spenders for advertising revenue, which hit $17.7 billion in the first quarter.

However, the damage caused to Facebook could be far more detrimental than its possible financial losses.

Speaking to the BBC’s today programme, Aviva Investors, David Cumming said that decreasing trust and perceived lack of moral code could “destroy the business”.

Other major retailers who are pressurising Facebook over its failure to tackle the spread of racist, prejudice and misleading information on its platform include Levi’s, Unilever, The North Face and Patagonia.

Following the news that Unilever has pulled its advertising, Byfield Consultancy’s Asad Moghal said that real threat Facebook faces is a potential domino effect.

He told The Guardian: “By taking financial action, a company the size of Unilever can effect change and force the hand of Twitter and Facebook; the business has decided it needs to protect its brand reputation and can longer be associated with platforms that deliver hate speech and divisive content”.

“But what will really effect change is if this move creates a domino effect and other big name corporations remove investment from the platforms”.