It’s increasingly obvious to anyone paying attention that Facebook is not a politically neutral organization. The platform has recently made it clear that it won’t take down political ads, whether or not they’re false. Last month, there was leaked audio of Facebook chief executive talking in a meeting about how an Elizabeth Warren presidency would “suck for us.” Yesterday, NBC News reported that Zuckerberg and Facebook board member Peter Thiel had a previously undisclosed dinner with Donald Trump at the White House last month.
Last month, rock icon Neil Young talked about the possibility of leaving Facebook entirely. On the website of his Neil Young Archives reissue project, Young wrote:
We keep looking at Facebook and wondering if we should be using that platform at all, given the latest news. It’s a problem we face together. FB gives you more than you want and it’s not all good. A lot of it is very bad misinformation about political campaigns and ads that are outright falsehoods. These are fine with Facebook, but not with NYA. If we were to leave Facebook with our social outreach we would lose communications with millions. If we continue to be on Facebook, we are conflicted about who we are.
With that in mind, don’t be surprised if we drop all references and contacts with the platform. We recently ran an article describing how to delete the FB platform. It’s not easy to disengage but it is possible… if you believe them.
Today, Neil Young made it official. In another Neil Young Archives post, Young writes that he and his Archives are no longer going to use the platform:
Facebook is facing criticism for sponsoring the annual gala of the Federalist Society, the powerful right wing organization behind the nomination of the conservative supreme court justice Brett Kavanaugh.
This turn of events, in addition to the false information regularly supplied to the public on Facebook, with its knowledge, has caused us to re-evaluate and change our use policy.
I don’t feel that a social site should be making obvious commitments to one side of politics or the other. It further confuses readers regarding truthfulness in coverage and message.
NYA, no longer interested in further links with FACEBOOK, will be discontinuing use.
We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to you.
It’s worth pointing out that Neil Young is a baby boomer rock icon. Many of his fans are older. Many older people use a whole lot of Facebook. Neil Young & Crazy Horse recently released a new album. He’s touring now. He’s continually releasing reissues. In taking this stand, he’s making it significantly more difficult to reach out directly to his fanbase. If Neil Young is willing to do that, maybe it’s time for the rest of us to consider how badly we need to see our old college roommates’ baby pictures.