Facebook: Don’t Promote Illegal Sale of Endangered Animals

Target: Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook

Goal: Don’t provide an online marketplace for illegal animal trafficking.

Despite Facebook’s pledge to help combat exotic pet trade, the company seemingly remains at the forefront of this illicit industry, reportedly connecting traffickers from across the globe, and even allowing others to sell animals on the very site. Animal trafficking has apparently increased in the platform since 2019, when Facebook chose to self-regulate, and in the time since Facebook has seemingly done little in the way of trying to stop this terrible trade.

In a matter of seconds, most anyone can seemingly find endangered animals—including tiger cubs, leopards, ocelots, pygmy marmosets, and African grey parrots—for sale, as well as body parts of poached wildlife, including elephant tusks and pangolin scales. Most traffickers on Facebook don’t even seem to be subtle about their craft. They apparently freely give out their personal contact information, and start groups with names like “Wildlife Trade, Pangolin Scale & Rhino Horn” with the knowledge that they will not be prosecuted.

Sign this petition to demand Facebook better regulate content related to animal trafficking and stop seemngly providing illegal animal traffickers with a public forum.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear CEO Zuckerberg,

Animal trafficking remains one of the world’s biggest current threats to biodiversity. For years, your company has apparently provided a public platform for animal traffickers and poachers across the globe to connect and sell their products free of consequences. In a matter of seconds, anyone can seemingly find and purchase endangered animals—ranging from tiger cubs to African grey parrots and pygmy marmosets—as well as the body parts of illegally poached wildlife, like elephant tusks and pangolin scales.

Although Facebook cofounded the Coalition to End Wildlife Trafficking Online back in 2018, your site has only reportedly seen increases in harmful animal trafficking content since your 2019 decision to self-regulate. Animal traffickers and poachers alike can apparently use your site openly and freely of consequence, as they have no qualms publishing personal information on public forums, and start groups with names such as “Wildlife Trade, Pangolin Scale & Rhino Horn.” These people are seemingly conducting illegal business in broad daylight, and no one is stopping them.

We are asking you, Mr. Zuckerberg, to please better regulate Facebook and prohibit the illegal sale endangered animals and animal parts. There is a difference between free online speech, and unregulated illicit trade.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Ryan Moehring


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