She wants to see change now.
Selena Gomez isn’t one to stay silent. With an Instagram following of 246 million and counting, she literally has the platform to influence the world, and she’s not afraid to use it. The singer has been known to address Facebook in the past for allowing hate speech to thrive on its platform, and this time, she’s calling the company out for spreading fake news about the coronavirus. Here are three times Selena Gomez called out Facebook for spreading misinformation.
Gomez has been publicly fighting against misinformation since December 2020, when she tweeted at Facebook directly, encouraging them to stop the lies being spread on their platform and warning them of the danger these lies hold. "Scientific disinformation has and will cost lives," she tweeted. "@Facebook said they don’t allow lies about COVID and vaccines to be spread on their platforms. So how come all of this is still happening? Facebook is going to be responsible for thousands of deaths if they don’t take action now," she wrote.
In the same tweet, she shared a BBC News interview segment of Imi Ahmed, a member of the task force at the Center for Countering Digital Hate, explaining the harmful information and inaccurate details floating through the Facebook platform and infiltrating the public conscience. "Less than 5% of misinformation was taken down," he said. "Social media companies say that they're doing their utmost, but in reality, they're doing absolutely nothing," Ahmed says in the clip.
In January, the Disney Channel star reached out to Facebook again about the attack on the Capitol, calling out Mark Zuckerberg specifically, along with other enormous social media platforms, including Instagram, Twitter, and Google.
“Today is the result of allowing people with hate in their hearts to use platforms that should be used to bring people together and allow people to build community. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google, Mark Zuckerberg, Sheryl Sandberg, Jack Dorsey, Sundar Pichai, Susan Wojcicki - you have all failed the American people today, and I hope you’re going to fix things moving forward,” she wrote.
Now, Gomez has taken her efforts one step further. In a series of tweets posted on July 21, the singer pressured Facebook to step up, reminding the platform that she had already called on them to take action back in December.
Gomez mentioned that both president Joe Biden and US surgeon general Dr. Vivek Murthy have also reached out to Facebook to stop the spread of misinformation by its users, but they still “refuse to act.” The singer also cited the Center for Countering Digital Hate’s finding that only “12 people are behind 2 in 3 of all misinformation” circulating on social media.
It’s great that Gomez is putting her social media platform to good use, and it looks like she isn’t going to back down until she sees the change she’s asking for.