Should Apple Cease Advertising on Twitter?

Ian Betteridge:

Apple is very good at taking a stand when it’s easy. It refused to carry various small right-wing social platforms on its App Store, because the content moderation policies weren’t up to scratch. Meanwhile, Twitter gets a pass despite having no practical control over hate speech and an owner who actively encourages it.

Should we be considering boycotting Apple and other companies that advertise on Twitter? Let’s frame that another way: if you found out that a company was actively funding hate speech, would you want to buy products from them?

I know I wouldn’t.

Betteridge is without question correct that Apple is in a difficult position here. If you think it would be easy, recall last year, when Apple had drawn Musk’s ire over the App Store’s policies. As I wrote then, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

But it’s hard to imagine any other ad venue — website, billboard, magazine, TV channel — where Apple would run ads that run alongside ads like this one. No need for a statement. Just cease running ads on Twitter/X, and stop paying for these promotional “hashflags”. When inevitably asked why, respond how Apple responds best: no comment.

Tuesday, 5 September 2023