From Nicole, Accountable Tech <[email protected]>
Subject Facebook’s long week
Date August 11, 2021 2:12 PM
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Hey there --

It has been a long week for Facebook since banning academic researchers last Tuesday. Here’s the full story of what’s happened and how we’re fighting to hold Facebook accountable:

-- Tuesday, August 3: In the evening, Facebook banned the accounts of independent academic researchers working on NYU’s Ad Observatory to “protect people’s privacy” in line with a consent decree from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

-- Wednesday, August 4: One of the researchers, Laura Edelson, revealed that Facebook had terminated their accounts only hours after they informed the company that they were studying the spread of disinformation on the platform leading up to the January 6th Capitol insurrection.

-- Thursday, August 5: The FTC fired back at Facebook for the “insinuation that its actions against an academic research project conducted by NYU’s Ad Observatory were required by the company’s consent decree with the Federal Trade Commission.”

The key takeaways from this series of events: First, Facebook has no real justification for banning academic researchers from its platform. Second, we deserve to know why Facebook banned these researchers only hours after learning they were looking into Facebook’s role in January 6th.

We’re fighting to hold Facebook accountable by demanding they reinstate these accounts and calling upon the House Select Committee to conduct a thorough, unbiased investigation into how Facebook provided the insurrectionists a platform to collaborate and coordinate. Our work depends on support from grassroots supporters like you. If you can, chip in to help us keep holding Facebook’s feet to the fire:

DONATE NOW: [link removed]]

Facebook has a documented history of silencing critics to protect their bottom line. Facebook will do whatever it takes to protect their toxic business model that spreads dangerous misinformation, extremism, and hate—undermining our consensus reality and democracy.

We cannot let them get away with it.

More soon,

Co-founder & Executive Director
Accountable Tech


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