Facebook content moderators worldwide send a letter to Julie Sweet, Accenture CEO demanding fair pay

Julie Sweet, CEO, Accenture

This letter is from content moderators for Facebook employed by Accenture at multiple sites in the US and internationally. Foxglove, a non-profit that supports content moderators and other tech workers, has coordinated this and stands with these workers’ demands.

We write concerning the town hall meetings you have called in response to a recent New York Times exposé, to address content moderators’ workplace grievances.

Moderators have several issues to raise in these meetings, but write today to demand an immediate solution to a basic one: fair pay.

Content moderation for Facebook is worth half a billion dollars to Accenture, as we now know from the Times. For every US-based content moderator, in the Times’ estimation, you pocket $50. Content moderators in the US earn as little as $16.50 an hour.

In expensive cities like Austin, with prices driven up by the tech industry, this falls far short of a living wage. We understand the ratio – of your profit from workers’ pay – is worse still in countries like India and Poland.

Meanwhile, your own pay package last year was $17.1 million.

This disparity is exploitative. For all the talk of algorithms and ‘AI’ catching harmful content to protect Facebook’s 2.8 billion users, we—and you—know the truth: moderators do the work.

In your all-staff email, you said Accenture is “proud of the content moderation work we do” because it is “vital and important for the ongoing safety of the internet.”

Moderators agree – and have been sacrificing their mental health and relations to protect billions of people online. Yet just this June, when Spanish-speaking moderators demanded a meagre two dollar hourly raise for this vital work, you ignored them.

Talk is cheap. Actions matter. Unfair pay is a problem you can fix today. Accenture can easily afford to pay every content moderator a living wage that reflects the immense value they offer your company.

Your corporate slogan is “Let there be change.” Your workers agree. But at the moment, Accenture is tossing its vital staff spare change while awarding you and other executives millions.

We look forward to your reply.

Yours sincerely,  

Accenture content moderators worldwide

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