Animal welfare and conservation group calls on social media customers to take a stand in opposition to dangerous content material
WASHINGTON, Oct. 4, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Leading animal welfare and conservation nonprofit Born Free USA has right now launched a brand new report exploring the abuse of wild animals on social media titled “Their Lives for Your Likes: The Exploitation of Wild Animals on Social Media.”
Social media is replete with movies and different content material that includes captive wild animals compelled into shut proximity to people, positioned in unnatural settings, and made to behave opposite to their pure instincts and behaviors. While this content material might sound cute and humorous on the floor, this can be very dangerous to each the particular person animals and to species as an entire.
Social media content material that exploits wild animals drives the demand for wild animals as pets. This, in flip, fuels species inhabitants declines in the wild; perpetuates animal cruelty and abuse; creates public security hazards together with lethal escapes, assaults, and illness unfold; and can endanger the ecosystems the place these non-native wild animals are saved as pets, as unique animal releases or escapes are fairly frequent. Without correct controls, social media retailers present an area that capabilities virtually like a digital circus or roadside zoo, usually depicting animals in inappropriate situations that considerably compromise their particular person welfare.
To higher perceive the nature of the most influential social media content material that includes wild animals at the moment circulating, Born Free USA analyzed 50 YouTube movies of 5 of some of the hottest unique pets in the United States in 2022: pythons, wolf-dogs, tigers, marmosets, and gray parrots.
Main findings are as follows:
- Videos depicting unique pets comprised most of the whole dataset at 64.6% of the pattern, with marmosets demonstrating the highest quantity of pet movies at 90% of all movies inside that animal class.
- Eighty-one % of all movies confirmed harmful direct bodily interplay with a human, together with 90% of all tiger movies.
- The excessive frequency of human/animal interplay in the movies means that viewers might incorrectly understand these wild animals as domesticated or “tame,” and thus protected to work together with, thereby enhancing the desirability and normalization of unique pets.
- “Likes” considerably outnumbered the “Dislikes” on each video in the dataset, suggesting that viewers principally perceived this dangerous content material positively.
- Several movies that portrayed unique pets linked to an unique animal distributor or breeder, which additionally capabilities to extend the demand for the unique pet commerce and to facilitate such purchases.
The report calls on social media customers to imagine duty to study the exploitative nature of this animal content material and tips on how to appropriately reply to it, as each view, click on, remark, share, and response perpetuates hurt to animals. By lessening the viral unfold of this content material, Born Free USA additionally goals to lower the demand for unique animals in the personal commerce; scale back the quantity of animals coming into this commerce; enhance particular person animal welfare; and shield public well being and security by decreasing occurrences of zoonotic illness unfold and lethal escapes or assaults.
“Social media is a superb instrument for training and leisure, however sadly additionally it is a medium for animal abuse,” mentioned Angela Grimes, CEO of Born Free USA. “Exploitative animal content material is unfold far and huge on-line, principally by well-meaning individuals who most likely don’t understand how dangerous it’s. Social media customers maintain rather a lot of energy relating to what content material goes viral and will get amplified on-line. With this report, we intention to lift consciousness of the hurt sure wild animal content material could cause and empower particular person social media customers to assist lower the impression of dangerous portrayals of wild animals.”
View the report at https://bit.ly/theirlivesyourlikes.
About Born Free USA
Born Free USA works to make sure that all wild animals, whether or not residing in captivity or in the wild, are handled with compassion and respect and are in a position to stay their lives in accordance with their wants. We oppose the exploitation of wild animals in captivity and marketing campaign to maintain them the place they belong—in the wild. Born Free USA’s Primate Sanctuary is the largest in the United States and offers a everlasting dwelling to primates rehomed from laboratories or rescued from zoos and personal possession.
We’re social: www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, www.fb.com/bornfreeusa, www.instagram.com/bornfreeusaorg.
SOURCE Born Free USA
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