AirAsia CEO expresses discontent over viral New Zealand terror attack videos, quits Facebook

AirAsia CEO expresses discontent over viral New Zealand terror attack videos, quits Facebook

AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes has deleted his Facebook account saying the live streaming of the mass shooting in New Zealand that claimed the lives of 50 people, on the platform was too much for him. He said that, “social media giant needed to “clean up and not just think of financials”.

Fernandes, who had 670,000 followers, announced his decision in a series of tweets.

“The amount of hate that goes on in social media sometimes outweighs the good. Facebook could have done more to stop some of this” he said in a tweet.

Fernandes is the co-owner of English soccer club Queens Park Rangers and is among business executives well known for having a social media presence. Fernandes’ Twitter account has about 1.29 million followers and he has tweeted more than 20,300 times since joining in 2008, often commenting on the performance of his companies, including one of Asia’s biggest discount carriers, and sports teams including a soccer team he owns a stake in.

Also read: New Zealand terror attack: Felix Kjellberg ‘sickened’ as gunman says ‘subscribe Pewdiepie’ in livestream

For at least 17 minutes on March 15, the suspected gunman livestreamed his massacre at one of the two mosques. New Zealand police alerted Facebook about the livestream, and Facebook said it quickly removed the shooter’s account and the video.

But that was not enough for Fernandes. Although the CEO said he was a “social media fan”, the livestream caused him to leave Facebook.

“It is a great platform to communicate,” he tweeted. “Strong engagement and very useful but New Zealand was too much for me to take along with all the other issues.”

Also read: New Zealand terror attack: Facebook failed to block 300,000 videos

Among Fernandes Twitter posts about shutting his Facebook account, he included a comment suggesting he’ll remain on Twitter: “But on Twitter I think the battle for me goes on.”

He had earlier hinted of shutting his Twitter page, citing “hate” being transmitted on social media.

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