Facebook Will Sponsor GOP, Trump-Dominated Convention

By Jenn Loro - 09 May '16 12:09PM
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Social media giant Facebook will proceed to its plan of becoming a major tech sponsor for the GOP Convention that takes place this summer where Republican and highly controversial frontrunner Donald Trump is expected to be officially nominated as the party's standard bearer.

Despite pressure from anti-Trump critics and protesters, CEO Mark Zuckerberg will not heed to their request of withdrawing Facebook's plans for the convention in light of Trump's seemingly extremist rhetoric during the height of his campaign. Other Silicon Valley titans are also participating. Google's YouTube will provide live streaming of the convention while Microsoft confirmed extending tech support but not money.

As reported by The Verge, the social networking company's participation will include massive tie-ins across its web-based platform and mobile applications. The company has repeated argued that it does what many traditional media broadcasting companies usually do- a duty to uphold citizens' right to be informed especially in the election season.

The whole convention sponsorship comes even after Zuckerberg threw statements criticizing Trump's policy proposals. Nevertheless, Facebook firmly stated that its official involvement in any political gatherings as significant as the party conventions does not mean a political support for a particular candidate or group.

"Facebook will support both the Republican and Democratic conventions...without endorsing any one candidate, issue, or political party...to facilitate an open dialogue among voters, candidates, and elected officials during the conventions," the social media giant's official statement reads as quoted by Mashable.

Despite attempts to convince public of neutral stance, not everyone is convinced though. A progressive group called CREDO Action has been one of those groups vocally calling for Facebook to end its sponsorship plan of a Trump-dominated convention as this would mean endorsing a candidate running on a hate-based campaign.

Another group called Color of Change has also called on Facebook to exert more effort in cracking down harassment as well as expunging hate comments on its social networking platform.

"When...they're choosing to sponsor a convention that is a coronation ball for a white nationalist who has said vile things about Latino people, Black people, Muslim people and women, it's troubling that Facebook would make a decision to host a lounge," Color of Change campaign managing director Arisha Hatch said in a statement as quoted by The Guardian.

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