It’s Time to Man Up Facebook

by Glen Canning

Facebook Page

Facebook Page

I spent most of the last day staring at my laptop screen wondering how I was going to write about this. I think this is revision number five. It’s hard to believe I have to write this at all to be honest and no matter how I tried the words just failed me. I’d start writing and stop when I knew it no longer made sense. It’s just hard to get my head around what I need to say being necessary to say at all.

Facebook, one of the most popular and successful companies in the world, has images plastered all over it’s web site advocating anti-semitism, racism, homophobia, and various other forms of hate speech and ignorance. Unbelievable isn’t it? Attention getting to say the least.

Ask yourself how outraged you’d be if that were true? But Facebook, the company that was founded to be cool, to make the world a better place, to make people more empathetic, would never allow hate speech like that. It would never fly on a web site that connects families and friends the world over and promises a new age in communication.

Thus my bewilderment. How is it possible they tolerate that kind of ignorance and hate to be directed at women? At half of their users? At mothers, sisters, and daughters?

Are there no fathers working at Facebook? No brothers or husbands? Where are the men and why are they silent about a company policy that rape and violence against women jokes are not wrong so long as they appear in the humour section? Have they no love in their hearts? Have they never felt the full hug of a little girl?

I can’t image working for a company that would allow for something as sick as rape jokes. Not in my position. Not after seeing what rape did to my beautiful, talented daughter. I can still hear her cry and see the hurt on her face. Far to many parents can say the same thing.

And men joke about this? About rape? What kind of man finds humour in the pain and suffering of others? In devastating their sense of being, their worth, their happiness? I shun men like that. They disgust me.

Ignorance and abuse can’t be hidden in a humour section anymore then you can expect the attitude it breeds to stay there. It won’t. It will walk around at night looking for the next laugh. It will wait at the next party for the girl who had to much to drink. For the girl who sadly finds herself alone and vulnerable. For someone to prey on.



So man up Facebook. Do women and women’s rights groups really need to launch letter writing campaigns targeting your advertisers before you wake up and take notice? What the hell does that say about your company’s moral compass?

In the movie The Social Network the idea was put forward that Facebook would be different. Facebook would not be MySpace. It would be cool. It would be something better.

Allowing for rape jokes puts Facebook on the same level as all the other women hating garbage out there in cyberspace. It might seem funny to a 20 year old college student who wasn’t raised to be a good man but there is no excuse at all for the good men who remain silent.

Someone at Facebook has to see this as wrong. As of April 2011 the company had about 2,000 employees and offices in 15 countries. Somewhere in one of those offices there has to be a cool man. A man who will stand up and say it’s wrong to allow this. It’s not funny. It’s a disease and it’s sick.

Man to man Mr. Zuckerburg I need your help. You’re in control of this business and I’ve lost a daughter. If you yourself don’t find humour in these types of images and the attitude they advocate than I’m asking you to no longer tolerate them on your web site.

It shouldn’t take a campaign to get you to see the evil in this and do the right thing.





Rape Apologist

Rape Apologist

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0 comment

Jim Nico May 28, 2013 - 7:55 pm

Glenn I am with you all the way and I will be reading your latest post more in depth…
Please check this out as an Italian group takes legal action against Facebook as reported here: And please see how I am treating this subject here as I refer to you often my ally:
I am here for you, and respect and believe in you and all in the spirit of the daughters we mourn the loss of.

Glen Canning May 29, 2013 - 2:43 pm

I’m here for you as well Jim. If there is anything I can do please let me know. Thanks for everything!

OMG May 30, 2013 - 2:28 am

well, obviously i am too naive, or have been living under a rock. I had no idea, re Facebook. I am not on Facebook, never have been. This is a good reason to never be on Facebook. So, from under my rock, I too wonder, how does Facebook / how do employees allow this? Promote this?

Jennifer June 2, 2013 - 2:26 am

Every time I read about your daughter’s death, I shake with rage. I have a six year old daughter and I am afraid for her. Between social media, early maturity, boys with wool for brains, and texting, I wish I could protect her from this world.
For everything you are doing to make life easier for girls – I thank you. More is being done to keep girls safe by you and by Rehtaeh’s family, and Anonymous, than the government and RCMP could ever hope to do.

Jim Nico June 2, 2013 - 4:47 am

Thank you Glen. When you can let’s talk and put our heads together–and leverage the synergy.
I think the sooner the better because I have some powerful tools that can amplify your message. My blog is about you man! My work is about you! My heart is broken by what happened to your beautiful precious daughter–and we will honor her, remember her, and love her every day– Rehtaeh. We will let our tears wash away the pain and we will be strengthened by how loving and kind and caring she was. And I learned to love and cherish your daughter through you man–your eyes–your words–your soul. Carol Todd is due to come on The Social Network Show® late this month–We could surprise her and welcome her together — you can read what I wrote about her–about you on my blog– and let’s welcome her together! When you can lets talk, lets plan, lets work together. Every time I think of my daughter I think of yours. I have some ideas and you and I have attracted some of the greatest, most loving, and caring people in the world to help stop the madness.–but you and I need to lead now–God gave me the platforms and when they see us raise our flag –they will be strengthened you our unity. You are a great Dad–I know that and grieving is first and then power… I’ve been at this all my life and now lets step on the gas and floor it!
“What ever you can do or dream you can: begin it– In boldness, there is magic, power, and genius”—- Goethe
Your timing day or night.
Your daughter made us friends–I will never forget that–let’s show her what we can do!

Carol Todd June 2, 2013 - 8:34 am

I love when I hear thoughts. Especially when they come from someone as impassioned as I am for the same reasons. Social media as it was developed, was made for communication purposes. It was platformed for the ‘he said, she said kind of things’, not for the the ‘Look what happened tonight .. here is a pic’ kind of thing. It both saddens and disgusts me at the same time. For the reasons that my daughter, Glen’s daughter and so many other kids have and will be affected by what happens with social media, my wandering thoughts are, is it the fault of social media… or is it the effects of technology which has gone rampant and we don’t know how to handle it. I am so distraught and hard pressed to understand and answer the questions. Are there any answers? How can we as parents make a change to how social media is viewed? We have seen how Facebook has been put to task about how they handle RAPE on their site by WAM. But I don’t think it is only about RAPE. It is about exploitation. With young girls. With people with disabilities. With those that can’t defend themselves. Hate messages are derogatory. Why doesn’t FACEBOOK have filters agains these sort of things. If the owners, workers and shareholders had children that have been through the sh*t that our daughters had to endure, would that make a difference? It has been almost 9 months since I lost my daughter and 2 months since Glen has lost his. Where are the changes that should happen? I haven’t even mentioned all those other tragedies that have happened in the U.S. Cyberbullying + mental health! It is not a good combination. Why can’t things be done? If filters were in place, maybe Glen and I could have had our daughters to laugh and play with in the summer of 2013. This message is to all parents and community leaders to voice their thoughts as a group to social media sites so that children can be knowledgeable and be wiser with their use of social media sites.
~ Carol Todd (Amanda Todd’s mom forever)

Susan Gunelius June 2, 2013 - 2:27 pm

I’m so sorry for your loss, Glen. I see the primary problem as money. Since Facebook has gone public, everything is about increasing shareholder value. Until the shareholders and advertisers fully realize what is happening and demand changes, it won’t happen. However, by working with Jim Nico and The Social Networking Association, I’m very hopeful that social networks will take action and self-regulate. Cyber hate, cyber bullying, and the cyber-anonymity and cyber-mob mentalities should not be tolerated by the companies providing the tools and making money off of them. I’m all for social networking and free speech, but there is a little thing called business ethics that is too often forgotten when IPO’s and money come into the picture. My hope is that the Social Networking Association can make a difference. That’s why I agreed to get involved and I hope others will, too.

Just Noticed June 3, 2013 - 6:48 am

Seems like Facebook took notice (finally)

But on May 27th, Facebook finally flinched. And then it cratered, caved and capitulated in the course of a single phone call after a one-week #fbrape campaign by the smartest feminists on the planet.

Stephen Lahey June 3, 2013 - 11:14 pm

When smart activists make it expensive to not take action, then publicly traded companies are forced to do something: “The WAM/EverydaySexism partnership grasped all of this. Facebook’s back was against the wall, and both sides knew it. The #fbrape campaign was a spectacular act of free market political theatre, executed to perfection.

The future of course is unpredictable. Whether Facebook can actually assert the needed control over its site is far from certain. But the #fbrape campaign demonstrated that failure to do so can still inflict a mortal wound on the company.”

Darlene June 7, 2013 - 4:08 am

I am so so sorry for you loss. I have a child who is also 17 that is struggling everyday with mental illness and has been shunned by her peer group. As a parent is is so hard to watch. I cant imagine what she goes through. Each day I come home and look through the house for her, scared of what I might find. I sigh a sigh of relief and hope for better days. Our system failed your child. Simple as that. Stay strong and know that many others feel your hurt, while not to the same degree we feel pain for these kids who are so very sad and lost.

Blessing to you and I wish peace in your heart someday!


Liz June 9, 2013 - 1:42 pm

Hello Glen , I am horrified at the way Rehtaeh was treated. As a survivor of rape and harassment I am amazed by her strength while facing so much pain. I had a thought re: the hospital. Since she was a
minor you should be able
to request her medical
records. If they haven t been altered they should have recored the strip search. Check with a lawyer I wish you and your family peace . Keep

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