These days, it’s hard to find anything in American life that draws broad bipartisan support. However, being critical of Facebook is one of those rare issues that both Democrats and Republicans can agree upon. Conservative lawmakers have previously blasted the social media giant for allegedly stifling their viewpoint on the platform, and now Democrats are taking a crack at the company for its “extremely troubling” approach to content moderation and disinformation.
Rep. Emanuel Cleavers and other House Democrats wrote a letter to Facebook this week saying that the company’s response to false statements by the president has been woefully inadequate. The lawmakers also took Facebook to task for its “micro-targeting” advertising practice, which they say is used to run “hyper-partisan” and divisive ads that are often false.
“This highlights a possible negligent obfuscation of responsibility to your team, your shareholders, and your users,” Cleaver and the other lawmakers wrote. “It also underscores a likely pattern of practice in failing to appropriately balance free speech against public safety and the general welfare of users.”
Of course, Facebook will never be able to please everyone. The company is too large and unwieldy for that. But the fact that it actually does the opposite and upsets everyone is proof that the company should probably reevaluate how it does business.
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