Facebook is trying to stop the sale of Amazon rainforest land on its Marketplace

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Did you know that you can sell land on Facebook Marketplace? No? I did not either. Did you know that people were trying to sell land in the Amazon rainforest on the Marketplace? Then neither did I! Selling land in ecological protection areas is generally illegal and can have negative effects on the flora, fauna and people living there, So Facebook announced on Friday It is changing its commerce policies to explicitly prohibit the sale of protected land on Facebook and its Instagram and WhatsApp platforms.

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Facebook’s announcement comes after February BBC checks into its Marketplace It found that people illegally sold large plots of land in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest on Facebook’s Craigslist alternative. The BBC found that plots without official land titles were often sold without ownership, driven by deforestation of the Amazon due to the Brazilian cattle industry.

The company told the BBC in February that the social network did not want to independently stop the illegal sale of land in Amazon because Facebook’s “commerce policies require buyers and sellers to comply with laws and regulations.” ” Now after several months (and scandals), Facebook is taking a tough stance. “Listing may not promote the purchase or sale of animals or animal products, or land in ecological protection areas,” Facebook’s updated policy reads. The company also plans to cross-reference the listing against a database of protected lands to identify anyone who violates its policy.

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This move is ultimately a good one, even if it is delayed. It’s just the timing that makes it weird. Over the past few weeks, Facebook has dealt with leaked research, with a whistleblower actively calling the company’s alleged hypocrisy and a major global outage. Stopping Amazon rainforest sales is just a weird cherry on Facebook’s shiny, multi-week sundae.

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