Facebook's Racist Policies Deny Authentic Alaska Native Fur Sales - P.O.W. Report

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Facebook's Racist Policies Deny Authentic Alaska Native Fur Sales

Valentines Day is upon us! If ONLY you could find that special and UNIQUE gift for your partner that isn't chocolate, flowers, chocolate flowers, and...chocolate that will make you the standout hero of the day! If you live in Alaska you would have a chance to stand out by purchasing authentic Alaska Sea Otter fur headbands and other items from a born and raised Alaskan Native Robert Miller.

Robert operates Sea Fur Sewing based out of Sitka that specializes in high quality fur, custom crafted indigenous outerwear that is inspired by his Tlingit roots. Unfortunately, Miller had quite the surprise when five of his posts trying to sell his crafts to various Facebook market places were rejected and taken down within minutes of each other:

In a Facebook post Roberts was (understandably) upset wondering what kind of rules he broke and why his products were rejected. Fortunately, it wasn't some nasty moderators who were managing the particular groups that deleted his posts--instead it's a system wide Facebook policy that flags anything that is animal related.

More broadly this policy which began to be enforced between 2016-17 states;

Here are some common examples of things that can't be sold on Facebook:

  • Not a real item: Anything that isn't a physical product for sale. For example, “in search of” posts, lost and found posts, jokes, and news aren't allowed.
  • Services or event tickets: You can only sell a service (example: house cleaning) or event tickets on Marketplace with Facebook's written permission. Learn how to list your home services on Marketplace by signing up with one of our partners.
  • Description and photo don't match: The photos of the item must match the description and title of the listing.
  • Animal for sale: Selling animals isn't allowed on Marketplace or buy and sell groups. This includes posting about animals for adoption. Keep in mind that it's okay to create a News Feed post or an ad about selling an animal.

The Unintended Consequences of Good Ignorant Intentions

Somewhere along the line, Facebook agreed with PETA and decided that selling animal products was Racist and unethical and immoral....at least that's what the intentions imply. By subjectively attacking fur as evil and denying freedom of expression by those who make a living working with pelts, Facebook has painted Alaska Natives as Racist Nazis who need to stop the barbaric act of making an honest living.

It would be fascinating to interview Alaska Natives who fought for America and ask them if it was still worth it knowing that they will be denied income, opportunity and the ability to show their cultural art to the world in 2019 by Mark Zuckerberg who, no-doubt, is himself a reptilian overlord at best and at worst a flaming racist who hates Alaska Natives.

Since you can no longer use Facebook as a platform to sell authentic fur products you might as well buy some chocolate covered strawberries...i'm sure that's not racist...yet.

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