Wales Arts Review is leaving Facebook, and here’s why…
The recent revelations concerning the documented behaviour and business strategies of Facebook companies (Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp), culminating in this week’s testimony of whistleblower Frances Haugen to a US congressional committee, has brought us to the question of whether Wales Arts Review should have a presence on Facebook sites. On October 4th, the U.S. Congress compared the operational strategies of Facebook, evidenced in the testimony and accompanying internal research documents provided by Haugen, to Big Tobacco. Haugen and the committee repeatedly stated that the Facebook’s own documents prove that Facebook consistently “puts profit above people” and is “morally bankrupt”. Particularly shocking is the evidence that Facebook specifically targets children in their pursuit of “social media addicts”. It was also evidenced that Facebook has pursued strategies that aim to destabilise democracies, most notably so far in Myanmar and Ethiopia, and have implemented profit-driven strategies that have resulted in real world violence and harm.
In light of these unconscionable business strategies, we do not feel we can continue to use Facebook as a platform to promote our own publication and business.
Wales Arts Review regularly reviews the platforms through which we promote our business, and have been watching for several years the interactions between social media companies and the oversight bodies of several nations, most notably the United Kingdom and the United States. Whereas other social media platforms claim to engage with protocols put in place to improve the way they operate, this week’s events have proved that the current culture at Facebook is actively opposed to the health and welfare of the people who use it.
We will continue to review the practices and principles of all platforms Wales Arts Review uses, and should significant changes happen in the culture and strategy at Facebook, we would consider returning to it in future, but we will deal with that when and if we ever see that change.
Leaving Facebook will have an affect on our site traffic, which in turn will have an affect on how we generate revenue. But Facebook is just a small part of how we reach our readers. And so we would like to encourage anybody who is used to finding us through our Facebook posts to either follow us on Twitter or sign up to our weekly newsletter and never miss a thing.
Thanks for reading, and thanks for your continued support.