Lush quit social media on Black Friday because of Facebook
Companies do a lot to get attention on social media – from squeaky brand Twitter accounts posting on Taylor Swift to incessant Instagram stories. But after Facebook’s own research showed that Instagram is bad for the health of young people, Lush decided to quit social media all together.
The cosmetics company closed its Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok accounts on Friday. Lush chief executive Mark Constantine said the decision to get rid of his accounts was due to the company’s serious social media security issues.
“I have spent my whole life avoiding putting harmful ingredients in my products. There is now overwhelming evidence that we are put at risk when we use social media,” Constantine said in a statement. “I am unwilling to expose my clients to this harm, so now is the time to take it out of the mix.”
It comes as Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, is accused of putting the financial success of its platforms before the health and safety of its users. In September, the the Wall Street newspaper published a series of reports called “Facebook files“. In those reports, we learned – thanks to the leak of internal Facebook documents from whistleblower Frances Haugen – that Facebook knew Instagram was harmful to the health of young people, and did not share this information with the public.
It was one step too far for Lush, as Constantine bluntly explained to The Guardian. “We are talking about suicide here, not spotting or whether someone should dye their hair blonde,” he told the British newspaper. “How could we suggest that we are a caring company if we look at this and don’t care? “
Haugen testified before the Senate just days before Facebook’s online services shut down for nearly six hours when, according to the company, an update to its routers went wrong (via NPR). Since then, other documents, baptized “Facebook Papersleaked, showing a lingering apparent disregard for the health of Facebook users on the part of the company. In the days following the revelations, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the Meta rebranding as well. than a plan to build and direct his version of them metaverse, which is an interconnected set of experiences in a new online world.
Facebook has made it easier than ever to take advantage of teenage insecurity
However, none of these measures deterred Lush, who only decided to quit social media after all of the above was over and despite all financial risk. “We tightened up over the Covid period, [the lost potential profits] will not destroy us, ”Constantine said. “I just thought, ‘This is their own research and they ignore it and we draw people to their platform. We had no choice. Lush attracts a lot of girls this age. “
It is also particularly noteworthy that the company decided to stop its use of social media during one of the busiest weekends for shopping all year round – Black Friday and the following Cyber Monday. Lush, who is based in the UK, estimates a loss of £ 10million as a result of the move. But Constantine said it was worth it.
“In the same way that the evidence against climate change has been ignored and belittled for decades, concerns about the serious effects of social media are now largely ignored.”