Leave Facebook, join Diaspora* - Part 1: Flexible morals

The new Facebook account I created after my original got frozen for not using my official name is about to be closed, too. This added to Facebook's questionable practices are making me switch to Diaspora*. This decentralized social network avoids the pitfalls of a business-controlled social website like Twitter or Facebook.

Harassment is lucrative

Facebook and Twitter are profit-driven businesses that aim to satisfy their major shareholders. This evidence bears repeating because they have limited incentive to limit the amounts of exchanges occurring on their respective platform. Whatever the nature of the exchanges, be them an encouragement or an insult, a motivational image or a sexist allusion, it still is an valuable interaction for those companies whose valuation is directly linked to the users' propension to use the service.

It's a simple numbers' game. If a famous actress leaves Twitter because of racists tweets but 5 accounts were created in the process, the end result is positive for Twitter, it's a sign of "growth", the magic word to keep a stock valuation very volatile since it's not based on a physical product. And if the famous actress comes back two days later, it's all good! There is no moderation to do because no harm was done to the company's valuation. On the other hand, Twitter is pretty quick to remove tweets containing copyright-protected Olympics Games's videos.

The uncomfortable complicity of Facebook

On Facebook, it's worse. If Twitter only feign blindness, Facebook embraced zealous censorship. I'm not using "censorship" lightly. Law enforcement agencies are using a special portal allowing them to request use accounts suspension and content withdrawal, like during the 5-hours standoff between Baltimore, MD police forces and Korryn Gaines that ended with her death when police opened fire on her. She was live filming on Facebook and his account has diligently been suspended and the video removed as soon as the official request was received a few hours in the standoff.

Did she shot first like police is alleging, which would somewhat justify the shots that killed her and injured her 5-years old son? With the complicit removal of the video, it's impossible to know. But the videos captured by police forces, bystanders or the victims themselves are crucial to identify and address racial bias among american police forces that regularly kill black people for no good reasons.


It's not the first time Facebook is embroiled in a scandal regarding privacy or free speech, but to my knowledge it had never been linked to someone's death. To me, it's a good reason to move away from the platform, the only leverage I have against this company.

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