Canada

MEC and Moosehead opt not to buy Facebook ads following July boycott

MENLO PARK, United States - Two Canadian companies that pulled advertising from Facebook Inc. last month say they’re not returning to the platform.

Vancouver-based Mountain Equipment Co-op and Saint John, N.B.-based Moosehead Breweries both say they have no plans to restart paid Facebook advertising after a month-long global boycott ended.

The July boycott involved dozens of brands including Canada’s six biggest banks, Lululemon Athletica Inc., Unilever and Coca-Cola.

Participating companies said the action was in response to Facebook’s refusal to deal with the spread of hateful content on its platform.

Facebook has since pledged to hire a vice-president of civil rights, extend its ban on inflammatory and fear-mongering ads, prohibit content calling for the harassment of others and hire and promote more people of colour to leadership roles.

While MEC and Moosehead are staying away from Facebook, Bank of Nova Scotia is returning to the platform after its boycott because it says it was encouraged by the company’s promises to improve.

Royal Bank of Canada also says it is resuming paid advertising on the platform after it held constructive conversations with Facebook and saw progress at the social media giant.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 5, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:BNS, TSX: RY)

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Facebook and The Canadian Press recently announced a reporting initiative called the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship. Facebook will have no influence over the stories created under the program, which is set to launch in the fall; The Canadian Press will maintain complete editorial independence.

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