What: A truthful parody of Facebook’s latest ad.
Who: John Oliver and the team at Last Week Tonight.
Why we care: Facebook had a tough week last week. On Thursday, the company’s stock dropped by 19%, erasing $120 billion in value and accounting for the biggest one-day dip in any public company, ever. As if the outlook wasn’t grim enough already, shareholders responded by putting together class-action lawsuits, claiming the company made false and misleading statements to investors. These financial troubles followed a barrage of recent bad headlines, like that time two weeks ago when Mark Zuckerberg defended providing a platform for holocaust-deniers or its long, unsatisfying dance justifying Alex Jones’s Facebook presence. Little did Zuckerberg and company realize the damage wasn’t done yet, and that Facebook was about to get dragged by John Oliver.
The Last Week Tonight host had a lot of harsh words for the company on Sunday evening’s show. As a framing device for those words, Oliver trotted out Facebook’s sanctimonious, self-flagellating ad from April–and then presented his own, more honest version of it. The thrust of the original ad was Facebook’s apology for committing the whoopsie-daisy of mass data abuse and fake news proliferation. Oliver succinctly sums up the public’s response to the ad after it finishes playing during his show: “Fuck you.” The bigger F-you, though, is his re-do of the ad, which emphasizes that Facebook has always profited from poor ethical choices, has always been aware of just what it was doing, and isn’t sorry for shit except getting caught.
Watch the Thomas Middleditch-narrated ad below: