Facebook-paid firm linked company critics to Soros: report

Facebook-paid firm linked company critics to Soros: report
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Facebook hired a Republican opposition research firm that linked the company’s detractors to Democratic donor and hedge fund billionaire George Soros, according to a report in The New York Times.

Facebook hired the right-leaning consultancy Definers to help it fight back the narrative being established by its critics in the wake of an unfolding public relations crisis this year over Russian election interference. 

Definers circulated documents over the summer to reporters, painting Soros as the force behind the growing criticism of Facebook that followed its series of missteps, including the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal and election meddling on its platform.

The political consultancy firm pointed journalists towards the Open Society’s backing of Facebook critics. Open Society is a philanthropy founded and funded by Soros, who has criticized Facebook in the past.

"This has been a tough time at Facebook and our entire management team has been focused on tackling the issues we face," a Facebook spokesperson said when asked for comment. "While these are hard problems we are working hard to ensure that people find our products useful and that we protect our community from bad actors."

Definers did not immediately return The Hill’s request for on the record comment.

This story was updated at 5:44 p.m.