Gizmodo: Former manager says Facebook discriminates against, excludes black users and staff

Gizmodo, November 28, 2018: Former manager says Facebook discriminates against, excludes black users and staff 

A former Facebook strategic partner manager for global influencers, Mark S. Luckie, sent a 2,500 word memo to all of the company’s employees before his departure in November saying the company has “a black people problem,” the Guardian reported.

In the memo, which Luckie also published in a public Facebook note on Tuesday, he wrote that black people “are far outpacing other groups on the platform in a slew of engagement metrics,” comprising one of their most active demographics in the country. Yet at the same time, he wrote, their interests are widely ignored by the company and attempts to address the situation consistently ended in little change.

Luckie noted several incidents of black users having their content removed or accounts suspended “with little recourse,” while in other cases their requests for help are ignored “until it’s a major press story,” as in the case of a major Black Lives Matter page that was later revealed to be run by a white Australian hiding behind assumed names. He added that black employees are often treated with disrespect, and that while Facebook has made progress hiring more black employees, “Efforts that promote inclusion, not just diversity, are being halted at the managerial level.”

One former black employee at Facebook told CNBC that they were not surprised to read the note, saying that the company “touts diversity and inclusion as though it’s a marketing opportunity, and perhaps it is genuinely meaningful to them on its face. But when it comes to tactical, day-to-day integration of their stock ‘unconscious bias’ training, it proves to still be a group of exceedingly privileged white people making similarly biased and discriminatory choices as other white leaders in the industry.”

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