Facebook announces $10 million commitment for racial justice groups

Facebook announces $10 million commitment for racial justice groups

Following a weekend of sometimes-violent protest across the United States, Facebook has pledged $10 million in support of organizations working to advance racial justice.

"We stand with the [b]lack community — and all those working towards justice in honor of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and far too many others whose names will not be forgotten. To help in this fight, I know Facebook needs to do more to support equality and safety for the [b]lack community through our platforms," Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. "[I]t's clear Facebook also has more work to do to keep people safe and ensure our systems don't amplify bias." 

The announcement follows criticism from several senior Facebook managers of the company's decision to do nothing about a status update posted by President Donald Trump containing the phrase "when the looting starts, the shooting starts." In contrast to Facebook, microblogging site Twitter flagged Trump's tweet with a warning which noted that it breached the platform's rules against glorifying violence. 

"Giving a platform to incite violence and spread disinformation is unacceptable, regardless who you are or if it's newsworthy," Andrew Crow, head of design for Facebook's Portal product, tweeted on Sunday. Zuckerberg wrote in his post that Facebook was working with its civil rights advisors and employees to identify local and national organizations that could most effectively use the funding.

"I know that $10 million can't fix this," added Zuckerberg, noting that the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative has invested about $40 million annually in support of efforts to address racial injustice. "It needs sustained, long[-]term effort."

Mark Zuckerberg. "The pain of the last week....." Facebook post 06/01/2020. "We stand against racism." Instagram post 06/01/2020. "Facebook's Zuckerberg faces employee blowback over ruling on Trump comments." Reuters 06/01/2020.