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Photo: Marc Piasecki/GC Images

Kim Kardashian West announced that she will join two dozen celebrities in temporarily freezing their Instagram and Facebook accounts on Wednesday because the platforms "continue to allow the spreading of hate, propaganda and misinformation — created by groups to sow division and split America apart."

Why it matters: The announcement from such a high-profile user is likely to be a PR disaster for Instagram and Facebook, as well as a boost to the #StopHateForProfit campaign. Kardashian West is the seventh-most followed account on Instagram with 188 million followers. She currently has 30 million followers on Facebook.

What she's saying: "I love that I can connect directly with you through Instagram and Facebook, but I can’t sit by and stay silent while these platforms continue to allow the spreading of hate, propaganda and misinformation - created by groups to sow division and split America apart – only to take steps after people are killed," Kardashian West wrote.

  • "Misinformation shared on social media has a serious impact on our elections and undermines our democracy.  Please join me tomorrow when I will be 'freezing' my Instagram and FB account to tell Facebook to #StopHateForProfit."
  • Facebook declined to comment.

The big picture: Sacha Baron Cohen, Katy Perry, Jennifer Lawrence, Judd Apatow, Ashton Kutcher, Amy Schumer, Sarah Silverman, Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio and Michael B. Jordan are among the other celebrities who the #StopHateForProfit campaign says are joining the 24-hour freeze. More are expected to sign on.

  • The group is calling for Facebook to ban pages that promote hate, forbid any event page with a call to arms, and remove election misinformation, among other reforms.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva: Kardashian West is huge on Instagram and Facebook, so she's bound to get noticed for this on the internet. But the impact on her own benefits from Facebook's apps will be trivial, since it's only a one-day moratorium.

Background: Facebook in particular has come under fire recently for their handling of pages that advocated violence at protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin. BuzzFeed News also reported recently that an internal whistleblower said the company was slow to act on misinformation efforts that undermined elections around the globe.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

Go deeper

Dec 15, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Exclusive: Facebook lifts political ad ban for Georgia runoffs

Photo: Chesnot/Getty Images

Facebook said Tuesday it will begin letting advertisers run ads targeting Georgia voters about the state's Jan. 5 runoff elections, starting Dec. 16 at 9am Pacific Time, even as its broader temporary political ad ban remains in place.

Why it matters: The move comes days after Google lifted its full post-election political ad ban that went into effect after polls closed on Nov. 3. The updates from the two tech giants mean more digital ads will likely start being used to target voters in Georgia.

Mitt Romney calls Ray Dalio's China investments a "sad moral lapse"

Sen. Mitt Romney walks to a Senate Republican caucus meeting at the Capitol on Oct. 7. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Thursday criticized billionaire Ray Dalio's investments in China, writing in a tweet that "his feigned ignorance of China's horrific abuses and rationalization of complicit investments there is a sad moral lapse."

Driving the news: Romney's comments come after Dalio's firm, Bridgewater Associates, the largest hedge fund in the world, raised $1.3 billion in November for a new private fund in China, Bloomberg reports.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: First known U.S. case of Omicron variant identified in California — America probably won't lead the effort to understand Omicron — CDC prepares tougher testing rules for international travelers.
  2. Politics: Omicron travel bans are sign of what's to come — Meta removes accounts linked to COVID disinformation effort by China.
  3. Vaccines: Omicron adds urgency to vaccinating world — Omicron fuels the case for COVID boosters — Moderna loses patent battles tied to COVID vaccine.
  4. World: Germany approves new restrictions for unvaccinated people — Omicron variant detected in more countriesWHO advises people 60 or older to postpone travel due to Omicron
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.