Palestinian social media activists have launched a campaign to boycott Facebook over what they describe as a systematic campaign by Facebook to censor Palestinian content on the network.
Palestinian activists called on Palestinians and their supporters to refrain from logging into the website and posting on it from 5-8 GMT today.
Activists have used the hashtag #FBCensorsPalestine to post about the censorship and have accused Facebook of siding with the Israeli occupation against Palestinians. Some Facebook users changed their profile pictures to an upside down Facebook logo to reflect their protest.
Facebook says disabling Palestinian journalists' accounts was a "mistake" https://t.co/PwlYLr3EmF
— Electronic Intifada (@intifada) September 25, 2016
A Spokesperson of Facebook has apologized for suspending accounts of the editors of Al-Quds News Network, which is followed by more than five million users, and Shehab News agency, which is followed by more than six million users, as reported by the Electronic Intifada.
“The pages were removed in error and restored as soon as we were able to investigate,” a Facebook spokesperson told The Electronic Intifada. “Our team processes millions of reports each week, and we sometimes get things wrong. We’re very sorry about this mistake.”
إذا شعر فيسبوك بأنه مهدد ومئات الملايين المساندين للقضية الفلسطينية مستعدون لتركه نحو بديل آخر فإنه بكل تأكيد سيتراجع.#fbcensorspalestine
— رضوان الأخرس (@rdooan) September 23, 2016
(Translation: When Facebook feels threatened that millions of Arab users will stop using it, it will withdraw its censorship decisions)
Facebook has reportedly signed an agreement with the Israeli government to censor Palestinian content after sending a delegation to Israel earlier this month.
Israeli Justice Minister, Ayelet Shaked,threatened to take legal action against Facebook and other social media platforms if these websites do not delete Palestinian content.