Facebook said Wednesday that it will begin pushing voter registration information to its users later this week as part of what it calls the “largest voter information campaign in U.S. history.”
Facebook wants to register 4 million voters before November’s presidential election. Nick Clegg, Facebook vice president of global affairs and communications, said the campaign will look to empower voters to hold political officials accountable.
“This Friday, every Facebook user of voting age in the U.S. will be given information, prominently displayed on the top of their Newsfeed, on how to register to vote,” Mr. Clegg wrote in an open letter published by AdAge. “This will be one step in the largest voter information campaign in U.S. history, with a goal of registering 4 million voters.”
Mr. Clegg’s touting the efforts of Facebook’s new voter information center comes in response to a Stop Hate for Profit campaign organized by the Anti-Defamation League and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People that persuaded major advertisers such as Verizon and the Hershey Company to boycott Facebook.
His open letter was published in response to the boycott argued that “Facebook does not profit from hate.” Mr. Clegg said Facebook recognized much of those protesting Facebook’s content moderation procedures involving hate speech are focused on how the social media platform addresses President Trump.
“We understand that many of our critics are angry about the inflammatory rhetoric President Trump has posted on our platform, and others and want us to be more aggressive in removing his speech,” he wrote. “As a former politician myself, I know the only way to hold the powerful to account is ultimately through the ballot box. That is why we want to use our platform to empower voters to make the ultimate decision themselves, on Election Day.”
The letter from Mr. Clegg, who formerly served as deputy prime minister of the United Kingdom and leader of the Liberal Democrats, signals Facebook is not pursuing removing or suspending Mr. Trump’s presence on its platform, which other tech and social platforms have done.
Twitch, a video streaming platform, has temporarily banned Mr. Trump from its service, and social media company Snapchat has removed Mr. Trump from its Discover feature that spotlights politicians’ content. Snapchat has allowed Mr. Trump to continue publishing on its platforms.