My girlfriend quit Facebook the other day.

Hashtag 'Bye bye Facebook'.

She put in her final post that she'd decided to take some time off social media in the wake of what happened in Christchurch, and she had realised she didn't miss Facebook - at all.


The final decision to quit it though was because she felt Facebook had not delivered and that "their silence over our grief and their inability to react in a human way, sealed the deal" for her.

She's not alone. The anger at Facebook for their deafening silence on how to handle live streaming in cases like Christchurch has been vented from all quarters: big corporates, politicians, celebrities, regular users such as my girlfriend.

The great irony of course is that Facebook was designed initially as a forum for people to meet up and chat, come together in a virtual community, connect. One big online family and community.

And yet, look at it now. Here they are, with a huge disconnect on their hands. Unable themselves to even decipher what 'being human' and having a human response means.

It's disappointing but it's also indicative of a new age dawning - one where we expect or actually demand more from big corporates.

We want them to exhibit more humanity. We want them to be responsive, we want them to be more accountable.

But are they capable of it?

When the bottom line is the driver can they ever really put that aside in favour of 'doing the right thing'.


In light of the lack of response to the Christchurch terror attacks, this country's biggest advertisers wrote an open letter to Facebook calling on others to join them in boycotting Facebook advertising.

They wanted "immediate changes or complete suspension" of the live streaming platform. Many Kiwi companies suspended their online advertising with them, including major banks and Tourism NZ.

But would that reaction ever be enough to trigger a response from Facebook? I doubt it.

Our Privacy Commissioner John Edwards also joined the fray: he didn't mince his words, calling Facebook's silence "an insult to our grief".

But will this bubbling frustration from Kiwis really make any dent at all to the mega giant global superpower that is Facebook?

Sadly, probably not. Which is probably how they get away with it.

Other countries of course have all lined up previously with their various grievances against Facebook, and what's it done? Nothing. Superficial changes here and there, but really, the message is: they don't care.

So how to respond to such arrogance? At the only level we can control I guess - our own accounts.

Like my girlfriend has, all we can do is hit delete.