Two separate reports state that Microsoft has stopped advertising on Facebook’s services because it publishes inappropriate content. The move is a rebuke to Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg’s stance on politicians and others using his platform for hate speech and misinformation, and Microsoft joins a growing list of companies that are pulling ads from Facebook and other social media services for the same reasons.
“Based on concerns we had back in May we suspended all media spending on Facebook/Instagram in the U.S. and we’ve subsequently suspended all spending on Facebook/Instagram worldwide,” Microsoft CMO Chris Capossela told fellow employees in an internal memo cited by Axios. “The timeline on resuming our media spending is dependent on the positive actions they take, but I expect our pause will continue through August.”
In the memo, which wasn’t meant for public consumptions but has been confirmed by Bloomberg, Capossela specifically called out the “hate speech, pornography, [and] terrorist content” that Facebook allows its users to promulgate using its services.
“Our experience tells us that the most impactful means to effect genuine, long-term change is through direct dialogue and meaningful action with our media partners, including the suspension of real marketing dollars,” Mr. Capossela continues in the memo. “We’ve also learned from experience that it doesn’t help our customers, our media partners, or Microsoft to publicize our media spend strategy, but to instead work directly with partners on positive change.”
Microsoft spent an estimated $116 million in Facebook advertising in 2019, and was the company’s third-largest advertiser last year, Bloomberg says.