Rep. Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren expressed support for Facebook employees who are challenging the company’s new ad policy which exempts political speech on the platform from third-party fact-checkers.
The policy comes at a time when Big Tech companies are under scrutiny for regulating (or not) hate speech or not doing enough to stop the spread of false information on their platforms. Facebook faced mounting criticism, including from lawmakers, for letting political speech on the platform go unchecked, but its CEO Mark Zuckerberg has so far, refused to back down, saying that the American people need to hear what politicians have to say so they can make an informed decision when voting.
The letter: At least 250 Facebook employees are petitioning the company to change its political ad policy, according to an internal letter obtained by The New York Times.
“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,” reads the letter.
Ocasio-Cortez and Warren criticized the policy and praised the Facebook employees’ initiative.
Courageous workers at Facebook are now standing up to the corporation’s leadership, challenging Zuckerberg’s disturbing policy on allowing paid, targeted disinformation ads in the 2020 election: https://t.co/jDJE7WplVy
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) October 28, 2019
Facebook's own employees know just how dangerous their policy allowing politicians to lie in political ads will be for our democracy. Mark Zuckerberg should listen to them—and I applaud their brave efforts to hold their own company accountable. https://t.co/i9W163oSQa
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) October 28, 2019
Facebook’s response: “Facebook’s culture is built on openness so we appreciate our employees voicing their thoughts on this important topic. We remain committed to not censoring political speech, and will continue exploring additional steps we can take to bring increased transparency to political ads,” the company said in a statement to Axios.
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