Global support wanted as Kiwi businesses pull advertising from Facebook after Christchurch terror attack

New Zealand businesses are pulling advertising from Facebook in the wake of the Christchurch terror attack.

They are calling for global support as pressure mounts on the social media giant to make changes to its livestreaming feature.

On Friday, alleged gunman Brenton Tarrant livestreamed some of his attack, footage which quickly went global as millions of people shared it on social media.

Facebook, as well as other social media sites, have since come under criticism for a lack of sufficient moderation and some Kiwi businesses have subsequently pulled their advertising from the platforms.

In a joint statement on Monday, the Association of New Zealand Advertisers and Commercial Communications Council (CCC) called on Facebook and other platform owners to better moderate hate content.

"Businesses are already asking if they wish to be associated with social media platforms unable or unwilling to take responsibility for content on those sites," the statement said.

"The events in Christchurch raise the question, if the site owners can target consumers with advertising in microseconds, why can't the same technology be applied to prevent this kind of content being streamed live?"

Lotto NZ has pulled its advertising, while ASB Bank was in talks on Monday to do so. NZME reports that Kiwibank, Burger King, and Spark are pulling advertising.

Paul Head, the CCC chief executive, said it is now time to act, but companies from around the globe need to step up.

"It's time that this issue was fixed for once and for all, because the concern that we have is that this becomes the new normal," he told Newshub.

"What we need to do is get global alignment around this issue, and we are prepared to start those conversations globally."

Head says it is a last resort, but totally necessary.

"This is not a commercial decision, this is a human decision. The only decent thing to do from a human perspective is to find a technical solution to it and do it very quickly."

Simplicity managing director Sam Stubbs told The AM Show on Tuesday that Facebook will take notice if enough large Kiwi businesses start making a stand. 

"Facebook, they are a very rich company, they have huge resources, the one thing they will listen to is when customers start walking away," he said.

"It is a very trick situation for them. On one hand they want to be able to make information available… but in this instance it has clearly gone too far."

He hopes the social media giant will recognise the potential danger of their livestreaming feature and change their policy.

"This is not an issue of what Facebook can and cannot do from a technical point of view or resource point of view, it's their policy on this one. So there policy has to change, and I think the only way the policy changes is if people actually speak.

"I am pretty sure Facebook will get that message. What Facebook will not want to happen is it rolling around the world."

New Zealand's Chief Censor, David Shanks, said there was no justification for broadcasting the livestream footage.

"As Chief Censor for New Zealand I have classified this video, this hate clip, as objectionable, which makes it illegal to share and distribute and to possess," he told The AM Show.

He said he doesn't agree with one of the arguments presented by social media giants in the aftermath of these sorts of horrid events.

"The argument that social media platforms advance around this is effectively they are like a phone company. They are not responsible for the content users put on their platforms or deliver through their platforms.

"It doesn't wash with me."

While he admits his regulatory powers are out-dated, he is happy those "bad actors" who spread the footage can be prosecuted.

Shanks said no one is untouchable and believes the attacks will "force a conversation".

"No one is untouchable, and I think any industry player has a responsibility, a duty of care, to its consumers."

Facebook said it removed 1.5 million videos of the attack globally in the first 24 hours after the incident occurred and is removing all edited versions of the video that do not show graphic content.