Zuckerberg Defends Facebook’s Political Ad Policy, Says Americans Should ‘Judge for Themselves’

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is defending his company’s political advertisement policy that allows politicians not to be fact-checked.

In an interview with CBS that aired on Monday, Zuckerberg was asked by “This Morning” co-host Gayle King about the social platform not taking down advertisements that “people know are false.”

In defense of his company’s policy, Zuckerberg responded, “What I believe is that in a democracy, it’s really important that people can see for themselves what politicians are saying, so they can make their own judgments. And, you know, I don’t think that a private company should be censoring politicians or news.”

Zuckerberg’s employees — roughly 200 of them — previously signed a letter to the CEO and other leaders at Facebook pushing back on the policy. Part of the letter reads:

“We want to raise our concerns before it’s too late. Free speech and paid speech are not the same thing. Misinformation affects us all. Our current policies on fact checking people in political office, or those running for office, are a threat to what FB stands for. We strongly object to this policy as it stands. It doesn’t protect voices, but instead allows politicians to weaponize our platform by targeting people who believe that content posted by political figures is trustworthy.”

After the CBS host noted the letter, Zuckerberg said, “Well, this is clearly a very complex issue, and a lot of people have a lot of different opinions.”

He continued, “At the end of the day, I just think that in a democracy, people should be able to see for themselves what politicians are saying.”

Watch Zuckerberg’s interview below:

Facebook’s policy surrounding political advertisements states, “Posts and ads from politicians are generally not subjected to fact-checking.”

In answering as to why politicians aren’t subjected to fact-checking, Facebook says, “Just as critically, by limiting political speech we would leave people less informed about what their elected officials are saying and leave politicians less accountable for their words.”

While Facebook continues to allow political advertisements, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has brought all political advertisements to a halt on that social media platform.

Published in IJR

Responses

  1. “The Daily Caller has been fact checked and were found somewhat right or mostly wrong, %44 of the time. Check out the Pew Research page to find out.” Allen Zabel

    You seem confused about my point.

    Why would Facebook hire D.C. to do the fact-checking if D.C. were so bad at getting facts right? Because FB themselves has been compromized by right-wing interests.

    “FOXNEWS tells the most fibs, with CNN, MSNBC, NBC and CBS, not far behind.
    Four to one?
    But there is no bias?” Allen Zabel

    That is just a confusing mess.

    There is very little liberal bias in huge corporate media companies. Almost none of them will even entertain having a progressive pundit on, today. Are you kidding me?

    Why was Claire Conner McCaskill hired as a commentator? Because she is this bastion of liberal ideas? Given me a break. She couldn’t even get elected as a Republican-lite Democrat. She is a conservative that can be passed off as a liberal, to give the APPEARANCE of offering liberal views.

    Your “liberal” media is sooo liberal that none of them would give Bernie Sanders the time of day during the 2016 nomination and election, and they are doing the same thing to him as much as they can during this election, too. Some leftie media THEY are. They won’t even put a real leftie on.

    Your “liberal” MSNBC legal analyst Mimi Rocah said that 2020 presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders “makes my skin crawl”. You call THAT a liberal bias?

    Your problem is that you wouldn’t know a liberal bias even if it bit off your sorry ass.

  2. If you pay to put false information on his website. It’s okay.
    But, if you put false info out there without paying?
    It’s a violation.
    Funny how that works.

  3. I am all for letting the public judge what is truth, I just hope Zuckerberg remembers that when a conservative makes a statement that him and his lefty friends don’t like.

  4. “Unfortunately most of the so called “fact checkers” are biased and lie for the left.” Kathleen

    You are confused, Kathleen. Facebook have been compromized by MANY meetings with right-wing organizations and advisors. This is what they DO to keep right-wing ideology in the headlines and in control of the media outlets themselves.

    For example, the Atlantic Council advised them of foreign propaganda and even that bastion of right-wing ideology, the Daily Caller, fact checks for them.

    This trope that the media is “leftie” is nonsense conjured up by conservatives to confuse you. It’s also a lie.

    1. This tripe is so awfully wrong, it should embarrass the author.
      The Daily Caller has been fact checked and were found somewhat right or mostly wrong, %44 of the time. Check out the Pew Research page to find out.
      FOXNEWS tells the most fibs, with CNN, MSNBC, NBC and CBS, not far behind.
      Four to one?
      But there is no bias?

  5. I think Trump put the squeeze on him. Zuckie, you’re a platform. You have the right not to vouch for the truth or falsity of what is posted or advertised. You have the right to post that everywhere. We are old enough to discern the truth from fiction.

  6. Freedom of speech is ok…but i believe politicians should be fact checked, due to liberals and lying.

    1. Unfortunately most of the so called “fact checkers” are biased and lie for the left.

    2. As a liberal, I agree with you. Liberals are just like everyone else. FYI – a good indicator of whether a person is lying is if they go on TV one day and tell you something that completely contradicts what they have previously said.

  7. Now that sounds more like the Mark Zuckerberg I knew when he was a young man just getting Facebook going. Back then he was vehemently against any censoring of speech on his platform. Of course, at that time he hadn’t really wrestled with advertising policy, because he was still clinging to the idea that Facebook wouldn’t have ads. But the overarching principle of free speech was very much there.

  8. Does anyone really believe something that they read on Facebook especially if it involves news or politics.I personally have a policy of not believing anything newsworthy or political unless I can verify it with three sources or see a video with whoever the news is about either making the quote or acknowledging the fact

  9. That is a slippery slope, especially since those who do fact check, know that the Dems are lying but many who support them don’t or don’t really care whether they are! Evil supports evil.

    1. your being silly, 49.5% want to be lied to by a Democrat while another 49.5% want to be lied to by a Republican leaving just 1% who don’t want to be lied to at all and are just put of luck. I am a happily disgruntled one percenter, how about you

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