Facebook Is Banning Black Users For Speaking Up Against Racism


Source: Urban Intellectuals

Urban Intellectuals has been shut down more than once, warned and banned over content. Sometimes it’s been as simple as pointing out the racism that someone else has said, sometimes it’s a mildly controversial opinion. We have to put ** in any slur or swearwords as it seems that others (yes, mostly white) seem to be able to throw these words around, including in very racist contexts without ever facing a penalty.

We thought it might be only us BUT it seems this is happening to many many black people. The DiDi Delgado wrote an article on Medium titled “Mark Zuckerberg Hates Black People” and below is an excerpt:

Mark Zuckerberg Hates Black People
Black Facebook users are having their accounts banned for speaking out against racism.

There’s a well-known saying in the Black community: “You have to be twice as good to get half as much.” This is sometimes referred to as the “Black tax.” It means that Black people have to work twice as hard as white people to receive a fraction of the payoff. So, for example, if I’m attending college, I have to get straight A’s in order to obtain an internship that Chad could get with a 2.0. If I’m interviewing for a job, I need to be twice as qualified as Hannah before advancing far enough in the interview process to fail my drug test. And, if I’m community organizing on social media, I have to have twice as many Facebook accounts as white activists, because Mark Zuckerberg straight up hates Black people.
Or so it seems.

As I write this, I’m currently serving two simultaneous Facebook bans. I, like many Black organizers, have taken to maintaining two accounts — a primary and a backup. It’s infuriating and tedious, but I chalk it up to the Black tax. Since Black organizers are more likely to have their content flagged and removed for “violating community standards,” we’ve had to find workarounds to sustain our online presence and engagement. Currently, my primary and backup accounts are both banned for “promoting hate speech.” That means bigoted trolls lurked my page reporting anything and everything, hoping I’d be in violation of the vague “standards” imposed by Facebook. It’s kinda like how white people reflexively call the cops whenever they see a Black person outside. Except in this case it’s not my physical presence they find threatening, it’s my digital one.

During a Facebook ban, a user’s account retains all functionality in terms of reading and navigating the site, but posting of any kind is prohibited. You can see content; you just can’t communicate. This conveniently prevents users from informing their followers they’ve been unfairly banned, essentially halting us from raising awareness around the issue. I find this doubly insulting because it’s reminiscent of early slave codes, which often made it permissible for enslaved people to read, but illegal for them to write (a potential catalyst for “insurrection and rebellion”). It seems the intent behind silencing outspoken Black folks hasn’t changed in the last a few hundred years. And while Mark Zuckerberg hasn’t yet sentenced me to “thirty nine lashes on [my] bare back,” I can’t say for certain that penalty isn’t hidden somewhere in Facebook’s ridiculous terms of service.

I’ve lost count of how many Black organizers have had their Facebook accounts temporarily or permanently banned for posting content that even remotely challenges white supremacy.
Prominent activist and co-founder of Safety Pin Box, Leslie Mac, was recently banned for posting, “silence is violence,” in reference to white Americans not speaking out against racism. Human rights advocate and psychologist, Dr. Mary Merrill, received her third Facebook ban for a thought-provoking post that apparently violated standards for her use of the phrase, “Dear White People.” Nynah Marie, co-founder of Brown Girls Out Loud, was ironically banned for a status criticizing Facebook’s racist banning practices. Community organizer, Sherronda Brown, was banned twice for uploading screenshots of racist and sexist harassment she’d received via Facebook comments and private messages. Although the original messages to Brown were reported without consequence, she was still banned for posting proof of the abuse. That’s like being charged with sexual harassment for posting photos of Casey Affleck. Not cool, Zuck.
Even Shaun King — who was once a guest speaker at Facebook Headquarters — had his account banned for posting a racist email he’d received from a white supremacist. Calling out racism seems to be the common thread between Black Facebook users who repeatedly experience censorship. Just as in real life, when a person of color (or Shaun King) calls out racism they’re promptly silenced and accused of being racist themselves. And this censorship doesn’t just impact activists. Any posts deemed in violation are removed from the pages of EVERYONE who shared them — essentially silencing thousands of Black voices (much to the delight of Mark Zuckerberg, who definitely hates Black people).

The article goes on to show examples of where reporting has done nothing to remove racist content posted by white users and how this BS is pretty much certainly weighted towards black users. Read the rest of the article here.

Have you been banned for posting anything? What did you post?

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