[ View the story "Does Facebook have a 'violence against women' problem?" on Storify] Does Facebook have a 'violence against women' problem? Netizens target advertisers in #FBrape campaign.
The Stream· Wed, May 22 2013 10:55:43
Many have taken screenshots of ads that appear next to these violent images and tweeted them at the companies, which include Nissan, Dove, and British Airways.
(Warning: The following images are graphic and may be disturbing).
Some have criticised Facebook for not removing these images and other pages promoting violence against women while being quick to ban photos of topless or breastfeeding women:
Several companies and organisations have responded, including Brunel University which said it's ads have no direct connection to the content in question:
@EverydaySexism You see our FB ad because your profile on FB suggests you might be interested in our courses. The ad could (cont...)Brunel University
@EverydaySexism (...cont) appear next to anything you choose to see on FB - it is aimed at you and not connected with the content you view.Brunel University
Everyday Sexism, one of the organisations spearheading the campaign, challenged the University's explanation:
We do understand you didn't intend your ad to appear there but if Facebook allows this content you have to make a choice.#FBrapeEverydaySexism
Others were similarly dissatisfied with the responses companies gave. Monika Neall tweets: "Finnair wins the award for the lamest response to rape and domestic violence."
Another targeted company,
, posted a statement saying it contacted Facebook and encouraged others to use the social network's 'report' function if they see any of its future ads next to offensive content:
We are aware of the issue surrounding some of our Facebook ad placements earlier today. Vistaprint does not condone or endorse any offensive content or pages. We’ve discussed this issue with our partners at Facebook and have been assured that these pages have been removed. Our ads on their platform are targeted at individual users, not tied to the content or pages created by users on the Facebook platform. If you see a Vistaprint ad on an offensive page, please visit the link below and report it.facebook.com
Several netizens were also dissatisfied with Vistaprint's response:
, Women make up to 80% of purchasing decisions. Supporting misogyny is bad for business. #FBrapeThunder Maker
There were also allegations of Audible.com deleting complaints that were posted to their Facebook page:
Laura Bates, one of the women who started the campaign wrote:
Hi Audible, pretty unimpressed with your customer complaints policy of just deleting all criticism - this is the 5th time I've posted this - will you delete it again?facebook.com
One company, NissanUK, was lauded for pulling its ads from Facebook in response:
getting the right responses from @NissanUK re #fbrape campaign, keep it up everyoneMs C
@thegirlgodbook @EverydaySexism Hi Trista - not justifying, clearly awful & we are disgusted. Have pulled the ads and FB closing pages. ^DPNissanUK
@everydaysexism Hi EDS, They have clearly told us don't, which is why the pages have been pulled. Pages gone & we have stopped ads. ^DPNissanUK