Facebook, Inc., is an American multinational technology conglomerate and social network based in Menlo Park, California.
Energy and Climate Change
Environment Policy and Reporting
As of 2020, Facebook’s global operations are supported by 100 per cent renewable energy and have reached net zero emissions. In the last three years, greenhouse gas emissions have been reduced by 94 per cent, exceeding the company’s 75 per cent reduction goal set in 2018.
Facebook also announced a new partnership with CleanMax, India’s leading B2B renewable energy provider today. This agreement will support Facebook’s sustainability ambitions in India with renewable power from wind and solar facilities, supplying renewable power into India’s electrical grid in states where Facebook facilities are also present.
The first project to be brought online in the agreement is a 32MW wind project located in Karnataka, India. While CleanMax will own and operate the projects, Facebook will provide long-term support by committing to purchase 100 per cent of the environmental attribute certificates (EACs) from the projects for years to come.
“At Facebook, we understand the challenges we face due to climate change and are keen to help address this issue in APAC. Our global commitment to renewable energy has resulted in an estimated US$8 billion in project investment, supporting tens of thousands of jobs during construction, including on-site infrastructure and installation as well as along the global supply chain to produce solar panels and wind turbines and towers. Facebook is one of the largest corporate buyers of renewable energy globally and our partners in the region have played an instrumental role in helping us drive towards a more sustainable future for APAC.” – Dan Neary, Vice President, APAC at Facebook. Source
Community Development and Philanthropy
Human Rights and Supply Chain Management
Compensation and Benefits
Diversity and Labor Rights
Training, Health and Safety
Facebook has a history of being cavalier when it comes to participants’ privacy. As an organization, their M.O. is to make sweeping modifications on their social media network and worry about users’ rights and concerns later.
This may have been acceptable back the organization’s early days, but now Facebook has over 800 million active users, of whom 75% are outside of the U.S.. In terms of size, Facebook would be the third largest country in the world, after China and India. As a result, Facebook has social responsibility.
Unfortunately, from a user perspective, there’s no user bill of rights or guidelines for what Facebook can or will do with your personal data – including tracking user interactions and movements on and off of the site. Information U.S. citizens would rightfully expect to be protected by their government!
Facebook’s latest round of enhancements have overstepped acceptable boundaries in terms of tracking users’ passive behavior such as reading something on Facebook or keeping track of where they go after they’ve left Facebook’s site. Technically savvy and engaged members of the social media community, notably Dave Winer, have protested this move as overstepping the boundaries and an invasion of privacy. In real world terms, it’s as if Starbucks put GPS tracking chips into their coffee cups to determine where patrons went after leaving the store.
Neither Mark Zuckerberg nor any other marketer has the right to track my activity and/or cross-reference it with other users’ data for financial or business objectives. Further, it can’t be assumed that I’ve read the extensive terms and conditions and privacy statements written in language that even lawyers can’t comprehend. The result is that the average user clicks-through these agreements oblivious to the documents’ contents.” Source
The Facebook Oversight Board recently released its first decisions on selected content moderation “cases”, and is in the process of deciding whether to allow former President Donald Trump back on the social media platform. The Oversight Board, while somewhat unique in the online content moderation ecosystem, is a part of a complex ecosystem of institutional and legal choices and actions. The Board, though fraught with intense and legitimate criticism, can still yield a few takeaways for policymakers: Cooperation is important, and appeals and private governance processes may be even more important.
While ostensibly participatory, the operation to create the Board still yielded a structure closer to Facebook’s needs: externalizing the ultimate decision making on tough cases, while retaining the significantly more consequential power to solely decide content moderation policies. The Oversight Board would be built entirely outside of Facebook, with independent members chosen from around the world to adjudicate a small number of cases. The result of the cases would, within the limits of technical feasibility, be binding for the tech company. However, the Board’s role in offering policy recommendations, an important and legitimate check on Facebook’s power, remained consultative and structurally uncertain.
As the rollout of the structure, by-laws, and members carried on in 2019 and 2020, the general community of activists, advocates, and academics involved did not feel at ease with the Board, which led to a mixed reception. Some had expressed foundational constructive criticism from the start. Others, focusing on legal rather than private governance scholarship, initially bought into the general frame put forth by Facebook, extolling the hard work of the team, its historical legal importance, and offering mild critiques. A group of otherwise remarkable critics created public relations stunts like the “Real Oversight Board” whose real power over Facebook’s actions is even less than the actual Oversight Board. Meanwhile, those that joined the Facebook Board excitedly, but incorrectly, hinted that their decision-making power over the company is final.
The Board will soon decide the fate of the former president on the platform, but it has already released its decisions on a first batch of the originally chosen cases, some more controversial than others. Relying on international human rights law and on the expertise of its members, the decisions were taken with immense care, benefited from external expertise, and included local knowledge, while also tackling with the conflict between speech rights and potential ensuing harm. Outside of the actual choices made, members took their role very seriously, and are not simply a rubber stamp on Facebook’s moderation decisions but in fact truly independent. Source
Sustainability News Feed
Jul 8, 2020 — A Closer Look at Facebook’s Commitment to Sustainability · Achieved a 59% reduction in our operational greenhouse gas emissions over 2017 …
Jul 7, 2020 — This year should be a big milestone in those efforts. Facebook has said its goal is to have its own operations be 100% sustainable by 2020 and to …
Apr 19, 2021 — As of 2020, Facebook’s global operations are supported by 100 per cent renewable energy and have reached net zero emissions. In the last …