Calls for social media responsibility gain traction
posted on 1st April 2019
April 2019 - Franchises are facing an interesting decision over social media advertising as New Zealand seeks to apply pressure on companies such as Facebook by withdrawing advertising pending the development of better content controls following the Christchurch shootings. The latest move sees the UK Superannuation Fund calling on more Government funds worldwide to join the campaign.
How should franchisors respond, especially if the movement starts to attract followers at customer level? Social media advertising can be a vital part of many promotions and it's a tough call for franchisees effectively to be penalised by the suspension of campaigns, even for the best of reasons. However, it's a discussion many will have to have if the social media giants refuse to engage and respond to calls for better safeguards.
Here at Franchise New Zealand, we have suspended our own paid advertising on Facebook. We are not big advertisers on Facebook and recognise that this will have very little effect upon that company, nor will it affect our own advertisers, but we support the campaign. We continue to post free information about franchising in New Zealand on our website and social media pages for the benefit of our readers, and are continuing with Google advertising. We will continue to review our position as the campaign progresses.
Another 18 institutional investors, including a huge British pension fund, have joined a Kiwi-led push to pressure social media companies to strengthen content controls in the wake of the Christchurch shootings.
The NZ Superannuation Fund said 23 investors with assets of more than $800 billion now hoped to convince Facebook, Google and Twitter to take extra steps to prevent the live streaming and distribution of objectionable content "such as the shootings that took place in Christchurch".
Three British pension funds have signed up; the Church of England Pensions Board, Britain's Local Authority Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF) and Merseyside Pension Fund.
But more could be added as soon as NZ Super fund chief executive Matt Whineray jets to London later this week to the 2019 Global West Government Funds Roundtable to call on more government funds to join the push.