Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is again defending his social medium against attacks that it affected the outcome of the election — this time from the left.
Commentators from media outlets like BuzzFeed and even President Barack Obama have accused Facebook of providing a forum for “fake news.”
“As long as it’s on Facebook, and people can see it, as long as it’s on social media, people start believing it,” Obama said at a Michigan rally this week. “And it creates this dust cloud of nonsense.”
Liberals point to stories like the one that appeared in the last weekend of the election from the “Denver Guardian” that purported an FBI agent close to the Clinton investigation had been silenced in a murder-suicide scenario.
Hitherto, Facebook has been criticized by conservatives for blocking conservative news and promoting liberal stories. That criticism led to the company changing direction and allowing posts that “would otherwise violate our standards” as reported by The Daily Caller.
In the wake of the new criticism, Zuckerberg spoke at a conference in Half Moon Bay, Calif., on Thursday night and challenged the charges that non-stories influenced the election outcome.
“Personally I think the idea that fake news on Facebook — of which it’s a very small amount of the content — influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea,” Zuckerberg said.
He added, “It takes a profound lack of empathy to think that someone voted some way because of a fake news story.”