With the overwhelming support of Woodstock Institute staff, we have made the decision to leave Facebook.
Update: if you are not ready to cancel Facebook / Instagram you can also join a coalition planning a Facebook Logout Nov. 10-13
You may have read the fantastic and horrifying Wall Street Journal series entitled “The Facebook Files.” I will not attempt to cover the breadth, nor summarize the extensive findings of this investigative journalism … but I invite you to use the link provided to read for yourself when you have the time.
Countless other reputable media outlets have followed up with their own investigations to confirm the sad reality that Facebook is more of a problem than a solution, and has made countless false, misleading and empty promises to promote democracy, to heal racial divides, and to bring people together.
The practices condoned by their management and employees are directly tied to racial repression overseas, slave labor, the persecution of human rights advocates, political polarization and increased mental health challenges to young adults. I’ve known this for quite some time since John Oliver’s piece in 2018. I have friends that worked at Facebook who hoped that this HBO exposure would change the culture of their employer. It didn’t, and they quit.
I now find myself in a position to take principled stands without apology and, with the overwhelming support of Woodstock Institute staff, we have made the decision to leave Facebook. We are deactivating our account and will continue to monitor the situation, but do not expect to return.
Woodstock was founded to eradicate what we find Facebook perpetuating, and using their platform to elevate and fund our cause is hypocritical at best. We would rather struggle to find new ways for fundraising and reach our stakeholders than swallow our values as we post content on our Facebook site.
We recognize the difficulty associated with replacing an effective social media platform like Facebook. We also recognize that many organizations rely on the platform in ways Woodstock does not. We nonetheless ask that you consider the following actions: join us in closing your Facebook account; share publicly your actions and why you left the platform; and lobby your colleagues to do the same.
– Horacio Mendez, CEO Woodstock Institute