Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Facebook vs. the LGBT Community: Why aren't allies leaving Facebook?

This is a remarkable kid. He courageously went to social media and bared his fears and emotions for all to see, in a special appeal for comments and acceptance:

"I'm homosexual and I'm afraid about what my future will be and that people won't like me."

A photo posted by Humans of New York (@humansofny) on

This kid's tears were shared far and wide all over the internet, with tens of thousands of people encouraging him. And some wonderful voices were included:

Now, Facebook's "Real Name" policy is, they say, a way of protecting Facebook's users against abuse. Yet it repeatedly fails to take any action against things that clearly are disgusting. Like this:

Facebook called it "infant yoga" and claimed it did not violate rules. It routinely allows for postings of things that justifies or even calls for abuse against women or LGBT people, and allows it to remain.

And yet you know what Facebook DID delete? The child above who was pleading for acceptance as a homosexual boy. No, I'm not kidding. Mark Shrayber of the Humans of New York reposted it, which is when it went on to find comment from Hillary and Ellen.

Now, after SCOTUS announced Marriage Equality was the law of the land, Facebook gave you a tool to make rainbow icons, and they donated a tiny amount from their billions to the San Francisco Pride board, so that they could advertise... I mean, march on Pride. But their policies still target and harm drag queens, transgendered, people avoiding abusers (many of which exist in the LGBT community) who need to use a pseudonym, and so many more. The Pride Board divided about this issue, and much protest was made, that a company actively harming LGBT people should not be allowed to advertise... I mean, march on Gay Pride. But one vote more won them the right to.

The usual insistence is that you don't have to use Facebook. But people have given Facebook a power over the internet that, if you don't use it, you are almost alone and missing out on everything on the internet. Plus many companies insist their employees have an account with Facebook, but they cannot have a separate account with a different name to keep private and business lives separate because Facebook will not let them. It's against their policies to have multiple accounts, or to not use your real name. So not using it is banishment from today's community, in actual reality. Facebook has power. Face it. And they're abusing it. Other countries have decided that their policy is illegal. Germany ordered them to change the policy. Why hasn't America? Why are we tolerating this?

Google+ could have been a contender against Facebook, but the usual issue happened. Everyone's on Facebook because everybody's on Facebook, so nobody wanted to go over to Google+ because nobody's over there. So nobody moved and everybody continues to give Facebook this power. For no logical reason other than you just can't get people to move because nobody is moving. It's ludicrous but it's humanity for you.

Facebook continues to pretend this is for your safety, yet has never once given any evidence this policy has protected anybody, while tons of evidence is shown to them that it doesn't. It guarantees that abusers will find you. They even lie by saying their policy isn't a "Real Name" policy and never has been one, yet... that apology not only was a lie, but it lied IN the apology:

Protests continue, and the LGBT community is not amused. yet nobody is leaving Facebook and going to Google+ where the policy isn't anti-LGBT. And I do not understand why not. I am asking this question. I want real answers. I want people to really give it a shot and I want a real conversation about this instead of it being blown over and ignored.

Facebook has admitted to experimenting with its users before, in ways that it knew to be harmful. It doesn't care about abuse suffered by its users. It has repeated allowed for abuse to go unpunished while, instead, punishing the one reporting it. Klan members are able to harass people just fine, but people trying to take down their sites are deleted:

The person who wrote this post in the #MyNameIs page is asking a very valid question. Why aren't you leaving? Why aren't you telling Facebook their management is entirely unacceptable?

If you are the ally of LGBT people, why are you still giving Facebook this kind of power? Why are you still there? Why wouldn't you even consider for a second to stop using it and give Google+ a chance instead? Because all they care about is the profits they make by selling your information to corporations. And if they think they won't get anything because we're leaving, maybe they'll think twice about this policy. Google is making it just fine without that policy. Why does Facebook absolutely have to have our names?

I have shared this image. I ask you share it as well. Start this conversation. Help take power away from Facebook. They will never change if they know they have us no matter what. We have to show we're a real threat before they change.