‘The utilisation of Facebook for propaganda promoting disingenuous portrayals of the African American community is reprehensible,’ says NAACP president

A civil rights organisation in the US has called for a boycott of Facebook after a report found a Russian influence campaign on the platform was working to suppress African-American voter turnout.

The National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP) is leading the #LogOut protest on Tuesday, 18 December, while also calling on Congress to further investigate the social network.

A report for the US Senate Intelligence Committee into Russia’s online meddling in the build up to the 2016 Presidential election determined black voters were specifically targetted by Russian operatives on social media.

Researchers at Oxford University and network analysis firm Graphika found Russians “sought to confuse, distract and ultimately discourage” black people from voting, as well as other voting blocks that could challenge Donald Trump.

“Over the last year, NAACP has expressed concerns about the numerous data breaches and privacy mishaps in which Facebook has been imtplicated,” the NAACP said in a statement.

“And since the onset of the Silicon Valley boom, the organisation has been openly critical about the lack of employee diversity among the top technology firms in the country.”

The civil rights organisation called on its supporters to log out of Facebook and Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, for one week.

The NAACP said it also returned a recent donation from Facebook following the revelations.

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