Warren warns Facebook may help reelect Trump ‘and profit off of it’


Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) criticized Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday over a speech he made that day at Georgetown University, alleging that the social media founder’s comments show “how unprepared Facebook is to handle the 2020 election.” The presidential candidate also stated that Facebook was posting political ads with misinformation to turn a large profit.  

“Mark Zuckerberg’s speech today shows how little he learned from 2016, and how unprepared Facebook is to handle the 2020 election,” Warren tweeted.

“Facebook had a policy that didn’t permit misinformation in any ads. Facebook built relationships with independent fact-checkers, so they weren’t the sole deciders of what was or wasn’t a lie. But Facebook undermined those relationships and excluded political ads from that policy,” she continued. 

“Here’s the thing, Mark. Trump isn’t just posting a lie on his own page for his own followers. Facebook is accepting millions of dollars from Trump to run political ads, including ones with misinformation and outright lies. Ads that TV stations won’t even run,” Warren added to the thread. 

{mosads} “Facebook is actively helping Trump spread lies and misinformation. Facebook already helped elect Donald Trump once. They might do it again—and profit off of it,” she continued. 

Warren has been a vocal critic of Facebook’s rules on political ads. Over the weekend, her presidential campaign purposefully ran an ad promoting a false claim that Zuckerberg endorsed President Trump, pointing out that the company faces challenges in restricting misinformation on the site.

“Breaking news: Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook just endorsed Donald Trump for re-election,” Warren’s campaign wrote in the Facebook advertisement, which featured a picture of President Trump and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg shaking hands. “You’re probably shocked, and you might be thinking, ‘How could this possibly be true?’ ” 

“Well, it’s not,” the advertisement reads. “But what Zuckerberg *has* done is given Donald Trump free rein to lie on his platform — and then to pay Facebook gobs of money to push out their lies to American voters.”

But Zuckerberg has defended Facebook’s controversial decision to allow politicians to post ads with misleading or false claims, saying it is “something we have to live with.” 

“People worry, and I worry deeply, too, about an erosion of truth,” Zuckerberg told The Washington Post before a speech at Georgetown University. “At the same time, I don’t think people want to live in a world where you can only say things that tech companies decide are 100 percent true. And I think that those tensions are something we have to live with.”

He continued to defend the policy during the speech, saying that the company had considered banning all political ads, but they rejected that approach because they can be “an important part of voice.” 

“Political ads on Facebook are more transparent than anywhere else,” Zuckerberg said. “We don’t factcheck political ads … because we believe people should be able to see for themselves what politicians are saying.”  

“I know many people disagree, but in general I don’t think it’s right for a private company to censor politicians or the news in a democracy. And we are not an outlier here.”

Facebook also came under fire after Trump’s reelection campaign released an advertisement accusing former Vice President Joe Biden, without evidence, of using his office to pressure Ukrainian officials to end an investigation into a company on which his son, Hunter Biden, sat on the board. No evidence has suggested this accusation is true. 

Tags Donald Trump Elizabeth Warren Joe Biden Mark Zuckerberg

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