Target: Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook
Goal: Increase Facebook’s surveillance of illegal activity to ensure animal traffickers stop using the platform to sell endangered animals.
Animal traffickers are actively selling endangered animals through Facebook. Bears, gibbons, otters, tortoises and a variety of bird species, among other animals, are being advertised and sold through “closed” groups on the social media platform. This is according to a report by Traffic, a network monitoring wild animal trading. However, most of these species are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered species, which bans their sale.
Traffic has said that “social media’s ability to put traffickers in touch with many potential buyers quickly, cheaply and anonymously is of concern for threatened wildlife and enforcement agencies.” Although Facebook has expressed willingness to help, the platform needs to urgently increase its internal monitoring of illegal activity to protect endangered animals from being traded. Urge Facebook to up its game in terms of surveillance and ensure animal traffickers are never able to use the platform to sell endangered animals.
Dear Mr. Zuckerberg,
You are certainly aware of Traffic’s recent report which found that animal traffickers are increasingly using Facebook as a marketplace to advertise and sell endangered animals. While Facebook has expressed its willingness to collaborate with Traffic, it doesn’t seem as though the company is doing all it can to put a definitive stop to this illegal and harmful trade.
Please take urgent steps to increase internal monitoring so that illegal activities such as selling endangered animals are no longer allowed to carry on.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Profauna