Viber cuts business ties with Facebook to support anti-hate speech movement
The messaging app will remove Facebook Connect, Facebook SDK, and GIPHY, as well as cease all advertisement spending on the social networking platform
Rakuten Viber, one of the world's leading messaging apps, has announced that it will cut all business ties with Facebook to support the growing #StopHateForProfit movement.
To protect its 1 billion users, the messaging app will remove Facebook Connect, Facebook SDK, and GIPHY, as well as cease all advertisement spending on the social networking platform, said a press release on Friday.
Amid the protests that broke out across the US over the past few weeks, a group of six organisations, including the Anti-Defamation League and NAACP, called on Facebook advertisers to pause their spending on the social networking site during the month of July over the company's inability to protect users from hate speech.
On top of numerous instances of data security misconduct, including the infamous Cambridge Analytica scandal in which the political consulting firm improperly harvested data of up to 87 million Facebook users, Viber sees Facebook's hate speech stumble as the last straw.
As such, the messaging app is taking the #StopHateForProfit movement a step further, cutting all business ties with Facebook, reads the press release.
Viber CEO Djamel Agaoua said, "Facebook continues to demonstrate poor judgment in understanding its role in today's world. From the company's mishandling of data and lack of privacy in its apps to its outrageous stand of avoiding the steps necessary to protect the public from violent and dangerous rhetoric, Facebook has gone too far."
"We are not the arbiters of truth, but the truth is some people are suffering from the proliferation of violent content, and companies must take a clear stand," he added.
The actions to remove the relevant Facebook touch points from the Viber app are expected to be completed by the beginning of July 2020.
The company's advertisement spending on Facebook will cease immediately.