The protestors arrived at Facebook’s New York City office on Wednesday to deliver a petition with 53,000 signatures asking the world’s largest social network to add women to its all-male board ahead of its public offering.
They chanted “Shame on Facebook” along with declaring “‘Like’ Women on the Board” and “Facebook: Women Are Good for Business.” One protester, Anne Cardinez, even plans to boycott the social network every Monday until the company adds at least one woman to its board.
The protesters, organized by women’s advocacy group Ultraviolet, delivered petitions collected through both Ultraviolet’s website and the Face It campaign, which together garnered more than 50,000 signatures in three weeks. Ultraviolet raised awareness for its initiative in part by running ads on Facebook, said Ultraviolet co-founder Shaunna Thomas.
Ultraviolet Co-Founder Nita Chaudhary said in announcing the petition earlier this month saying:
“The fact that a company as large as Facebook with a massive global reach does not have a single woman on its board is nothing short of shameful. Facebook owes it success to and makes a ton of money off of its women users. Women are responsible for nearly two-thirds of the sharing that happens on the site. In addition, women account for more than 70 percent of daily fan activity on the site, which is a huge source of revenue for the company. Facebook has a problem, and it needs to solve it before it goes public. Mark Zuckerberg should live up to his company’s mission statement and appoint at least one woman to the board today.”
When asked to explain the death of female board members, Zuckerberg has said that he seeks out individuals who can serve the company best and that he is blind to gender.
“I’m going to find people who are helpful, and I don’t particularly care what gender they are or what company they are. I’m not filling the board with check boxes,” he told The New Yorker in July 2011.