John Oliver tells Americans they aren’t the only victims of Facebook in his latest Last Week Tonight deep dive; they aren’t even the worst case. Oliver’s new segment highlights the Facebook launch in Myanmar, a small country in southeast Asia. Unsurprisingly, Zuckerberg and co. were extremely ill-prepared.
Before Facebook, less than one percent of Myanmar citizens had internet access. When the festering social media site dropped in, it was free, and gave free, unlimited access to its users—it was basically equated with the entire internet itself. People used the words interchangeably because of how widespread it became. Facebook posts became likened to news sources—not that we’d know anything about that.
Oliver’s team pulls an interview with a teacher describing the website: “Everybody is busy on smartphone, playing games. I hate. I hate. I don’t like this. It’s terrible. Looks like Facebook is a toilet.” He pauses and reiterates: “Toilet.”
Teachers in the States are irritated by their students playing on their fancy whatchamacallits in class, too, but Myanmar has a more advanced problem. There, Facebook connects like-minded bigots, and expedites a genocide on its Rohingya and Muslim citizens. Really puts Grandma’s alt-right memes in perspective.
Oliver highlights one particular user who abused that new status quo, who, ironically, is a Buddhist monk. In a 60 Minutes interview, he says Muslims are “defecating” on the country. That monk is also known as “the Burmese Bin Laden,” which Oliver says “is as jarring as if you found out there’s a Care Bear known as The One Who Fucks.” Facebook dragged its feet in blocking the account, even after the monk’s posts directly caused deadly, unfounded riots.
This week, Oliver proves Facebook is entire planet’s toilet. In a People of the World kind of way, it’s nice—but in the ‘Facebook is a tool for genocidal monks’ kind of way, it’s pretty terrible.
Check out Oliver’s full Facebook takedown below.