CNN’s Oliver Darcy recently wrote a post about how he went to some sort of event on Facebook’s battle against #FakeNews. He said he asked Facebook why it hasn’t taken down InfoWars and received a non-answer answer.
After a short presentation showcasing Facebook’s efforts to fight misinformation, John Hegeman, the head of Facebook’s News Feed, and Sara Su, a Facebook product specialist for News Feed, took questions from reporters.
When asked by this reporter how the company could claim it was serious about tackling the problem of misinformation online while simultaneously allowing InfoWars to maintain a page with nearly one million followers on its website, Hegeman said that the company does not “take down false news.”
“I guess just for being false that doesn’t violate the community standards,” Hegeman said, explaining that InfoWars has “not violated something that would result in them being taken down.”
Hegeman added, “I think part of the fundamental thing here is that we created Facebook to be a place where different people can have a voice. And different publishers have very different points of view.”
Facebook invited me to an event today where the company aimed to tout its commitment to fighting fake news and misinformation.
I asked them why InfoWars is still allowed on the platform.
I didn’t get a good answer.https://t.co/WwLgqa6vQ4
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) July 12, 2018
Facebook responded to that tweet.
We see Pages on both the left and the right pumping out what they consider opinion or analysis – but others call fake news. We believe banning these Pages would be contrary to the basic principles of free speech.
— Facebook (@facebook) July 12, 2018
That’s…interesting. (No word on why they think it’s OK to squash conservative publishers on their platform, but whatever.)
It really sucks that InfoWars is being used as the example here, because Alex Jones is a stain. (PJW– why?!?!?) But yeah, that’s Facebook’s answer, and people are freaking out.
So to @facebook, an immigration story is worthy of censorship, but Infowars saying that Sandy Hook was staged isn’t.
Hell of a fake news policy. https://t.co/zj01SFFJuN
— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) July 13, 2018
Facebook can’t explain why it lets InfoWars use the social media platform to spread crazy lies. This is only the latest example of the fundamental business and moral shortcomings with top Facebook management. CNNMoney https://t.co/XuffhZ6Rnz
— David Cay Johnston (@DavidCayJ) July 13, 2018
Facebook says it won’t ban InfoWars and other groups that post debunked conspiracy theories https://t.co/oOhCn2xFVq
— Axios (@axios) July 13, 2018
1. Everyone should be frightened that Facebook feels no obligation to boot psychopaths like Infowars
2. Crazy as that is, everyone should also be frightened by Facebook *ever* saying “see we’re not censoring, we’re just burying things intentionally where masses won’t find them” https://t.co/HSR71jFdPy
— Adam Weinstein (@AdamWeinstein) July 13, 2018
“We created Facebook to be a place where different people can have a voice.”
But what if that voice is spreading dangerous false information? https://t.co/CnErcVsxTO
— Steve Westly (@SteveWestly) July 13, 2018
FB is only in hot water now because liberals are mad it’s not getting rid of the “#FakeNews outlets” THEY don’t like. Let’s be real.