Facebook vs. The World: The Campaign to Save WhatsApp and Protect Users’ Privacy

Produced by Internews. WhatsApp is the world’s most popular messaging platform with over 2.5 billion active users. People from India to Mexico to Ghana use the platform for everything from sharing memes, communicating with family, selling goods and services, mobilizing political actions, and even engaging in remote teaching and learning. When Facebook bought WhatsApp in 2014, Mark Zuckerberg promised users that nothing would change for them or their data. But in 2016, Facebook broke that promise and began sharing WhatsApp user data with Facebook. In January 2021, Facebook announced another change to the WhatsApp privacy policy that forced users to accept the changes, with no opt-out, or lose all functionality. A coalition of advocacy organizations, lawyers, and regulatory bodies across the globe came together to #stopFacebook and #saveWhatsApp for the billions of users that rely on it for work, family, and everything else. Advocates and experts Renata Avila, Mishi Choudhary, and Eduardo Carrillo join the podcast to tell the story of the campaign, its path to victory, and what we can learn from this success for wider global digital rights advocacy.


Research and Interviews: Laura Schwartz-Henderson, Laura Vidal
Concept and script: Dana Floberg, Laura Vidal, Laura Schwartz-Henderson
Interviewees: Renata Avila, Mishi Choudhary, Eduardo Carrillo
Editing & Mixing: Laura Vidal & Ergi Shkëlzeni
Visual Design: Ura Design
Production: Laura Schwartz-Henderson, Dana Floberg, and Laura Vidal
Executive Producers: Laura Schwartz-Henderson and Laura Vidal
Sponsored by Internews and Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Washington DC
For more information on the Stop Facebook, Save WhatsApp campaign, see the resources available at https://savewhatsapp.org