Tulipshare, a mobile app that empowers individuals to drive ethical change at public companies by becoming a shareholder, has filed a proposal to PayPal, calling on the company to ease account suspensions and provide non-discriminatory financial services to all users.
PayPal’s Acceptable Use Policy details a non-exhaustive list of activities requiring pre-approval, though there is no remediation information for users seeking to appeal account suspensions or deactivation.
Tilipshare says these policies have been shown to disproportionately harm groups of people, such as sex workers and members of the balck community. PayPal has also been accused of routinely targeting users for speech protected by the First Amendment. The company has frozen the account of News Media Canada for a payment to submit an article about Syrian refugees for an award, shut down pro-democracy accounts in Hong Kon, and terminated service to a user for using an open-source software that enables anonymous communication.
Tulipshare is calling on PayPal to begin providing clearer explanations of the number and categories of account suspensions that may reasonably be expected to limit freedom of expression or access to information or financial services. If implemented accordingly, this means that if PayPal decides to close an individual or business account, the company must provide meaningful notice about the particular Terms of Services provision that was violated, and users should have the opportunity to appeal the decision in a timely and efficient manner.
Antoine Argouges, Chief Executive and Founder of Tulipshare comments: “By not being transparent with users around their policies and reasons for exclusion from their platform, PayPal is missing out on the opportunity to service these users. Not only has this approach shown to be discriminatory, but it is losing out on potential market share and revenue as a result. We hope to be joined by many shareholders and we welcome other like-minded retail investors to have their say on the proposal by joining our campaign.”