You have played an important role in empowering people to share their thoughts, unimpeded, with others.  Social media is today’s public square.  Ensuring fair and equal access is of vital importance to everyone.

We call on you to:

Make Facebook a place where all viewpoints can be discussed freely, openly and without fear. 

Prevent online bullying by groups of users wrongfully using the tools you establish to prevent hateful, or obscene speech to suppress speech that is neither hateful, nor obscene but with which they disagree. 

Be transparent and communicative should you ever adjust Facebook to reduce the number of friends permitted to see a group’s posts, or restrict a post’s “virality.” 

Provide groups the opportunity to address any throttling of their posts with real people empowered to correct the situation, make the correction promptly and protect groups from future attacks.

Recognize that “fact checking” is subject to bias, intolerance and abuse that can lead to “fact suppression.”  Leave fact checking and analysis to the participants in the debate.

Recognize that many Facebook groups are paying customers who should be treated fairly and equally.  Selling ads while simultaneously suppressing posts’ exposure is wrong and can violate state and federal consumer protections against unfair and deceptive acts and practices. 

Recognize that Facebook would not be what it is today had search engines and internet providers secretly suppressed early access to it.

Singling out groups for suppression is wrong, as would be suppressing all groups, which silences new ideas and innovations unable to find expression through the legacy media. 

When err you must, do it on the side of free speech.


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