Air New Zealand will continue to advertise on Facebook in spite of growing pressure from big advertisers to boycott the platform if changes to livestream policies aren't made.

The airline says like many other New Zealand businesses it had decided to pause advertising on social media platforms out of respect for victims of the Christchurch tragedy.

It intended reinstating advertising on these platforms at an ''appropriate time''.

"Air New Zealand has no plan to change the mix of channels where it places advertising globally. While our global advertising budget is commercially sensitive, our spend with Facebook only makes up a small part of it," said a spokeswoman.


Marketing and advertising by the airline - 51 per cent owned by taxpayers - runs to tens of millions of dollars.

Tourism New Zealand also suspended its advertising with Facebook and says it doesn't know if it will resume running ads on the platform which live-streamed the mosque attacks in which 50 people were killed.

''Our activity is still on hold while we work with our markets to determine the best approach to resuming,'' said a spokeswoman.

Tourism NZ is a government agency that spends $45 million on adverts (as part of its $117m annual budget) targeting overseas audiences and makes extensive use of social media including Facebook.

Founder and chief executive of that company Mark Zuckerberg has been widely criticised for not responding to questions over the failure of the site to block the 17-minute livestream of the shootings.

When asked whether Tourism NZ would return to Facebook, a spokeswoman said it was a ''complete unknown at this stage''.

Tourism NZ had stepped up monitoring of its Facebook page which continues to carry comments about the mosque killings. While the majority express sympathy and are supportive of the country's response there are others which are controversial and describe New Zealand as a ''terrorist country'' and urge people not to travel here.

In an open letter sent to the Herald, the Association of New Zealand Advertisers (ANZA) chief executive Lindsay Mouat and the Commercial Communications Council chief executive Paul Head call for immediate changes or the complete suspension of the live-streaming platform.


If these changes are not made, the pair of executives call international advertisers to suspend the use of the platform altogether until Facebook ensures the spread of such harmful content can't happen again.

This comes after a range of high-profile New Zealand advertisers decided to suspend their advertising on the platform.

This includes major banks ASB, ANZ, BNZ, TSB and Westpac as well as a number of other major local advertisers including Lotto.

The nation's major telcos - Vodafone, 2degrees and Spark - called for action from the social media company.

The Commercial Communications Council estimates that hundreds of advertisers have already pulled advertising from social media since the event.

State Services Minister Chris Hipkins said cabinet had decided there would be no government-wide restriction on how departments use social media.

''In many cases they use it to provide valuable services and information to the public,'' he said.

"As the prime minister has said, what the Government is looking for, rather than protest, is meaningful change.''

The Government's role as a regulator rather than a user was where actions could be most effective, said Hipkins.