Target: Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg
Goal: Remove ads from Facebook supporting the Keystone XL pipeline
A political group called FWD.US is co-founded by Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, NationBuilder’s co-founder Joe Green, LinkedIn’s Reid Hoffman, Dropbox’s Drew Houston, and others in the tech industry. Although the group sells itself as a bipartisan entity dedicated to passing immigration reform, the group has funded several ads advocating environmental destruction, including drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and constructing the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
FWD.US frames itself around a campaign for a comprehensive immigration reform bill, including enhanced border security, more visas for workers with special skills, and a pathway to citizenship for those living in the U.S. without legal status. The group also advocates education reform and expanded scientific research.
FWD.US sponsors subsidiary organizations to purchase TV ads. These ads have included one spot with Republican Senator Lindsay Graham criticizing Obama for not supporting the Keystone pipeline and more oil drilling in the Gulf. Another ad praises Democratic Senator Mark Begich for his support of Alaska’s natural gas pipeline and for opening up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. The ad campaign run by FWD.US has cost in excess of seven figures and did not mention immigration policy.
The group’s advocacy for expanded drilling and pipeline construction is surprising given Zuckerberg’s public statements about the purpose of the group as dedicated to “building the knowledge economy” and his past statements advocated sustaining natural resources. With his huge financial support of these ads, Zuckerberg is sending a detrimental message to the millions of Facebook users who are exposed to the campaign. Ask Zuckerberg to stop funding pro-Keystone pipeline ads.
Dear Mark Zuckerberg,
Your group, FWD.US, has advocated expanded drilling and pipeline construction, including the environmentally devastating and dangerous Keystone XL pipeline project. It is surprising you would sponsor such ads given your previous public statements advocating sustaining natural resources. Facebook is enabling huge financial support for ads advocating massively environmentally destructive projects that send a detrimental message to millions of Facebook users. These ads must be removed.
Although your group has framed itself around a campaign for a comprehensive immigration reform, it has sponsored ads costing seven figures that criticize Obama for not supporting the Keystone pipeline and more oil drilling in the Gulf, and support opening up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. Facebook should not become a venue for politicians to buy political influence or serve as a forum advocating destructive development projects. Your constituents demand you remove these ads from Facebook.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Spencer E Holtaway via Flickr