Published: Fri, November 16, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Soros group slams Facebook, calling it ‘active in promoting’ hate and misinformation

Soros group slams Facebook, calling it ‘active in promoting’ hate and misinformation

The Republican opposition research firm had attempted to discredit some of Facebook's critics, in part, by linking them to liberal activist George Soros.

"I have come to believe that we shouldn't be making so many decisions about free expression and safety on our own", Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a media briefing.

Zuckerberg also provided cover for Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, who he said was also not involved with Definers' controversial tactics, and that she learned of them at the same time he did.

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The day after an investigation by The New York Times called Zuckerberg's leadership into question - and accused the company of concealing damaging information from the public - it was evident that he is pursuing a painstaking approach to crisis management: more transparency.

The sniping continued, according to the Times, as a site connected to a Republican opposition research firm working for Facebook, published several stories critical of Apple. Facebook along with other platforms like Twitter, are also trying to define their role in policing hateful posts.

Facebook is challenging the Times' report, saying it contains a "number of inaccuracies". An official from Soros' foundation reportedly told the Times it had not supported the "Freedom from Facebook" group targeted by the company and had not made grants in support of campaigns against Facebook. In a post, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the relationship between the governance body and users would be like that between a board of directors and shareholders.

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"It's been disappointing to see how [Facebook leaders] have failed to monitor hate and misinformation on Facebook's platform". Another was to depict the Facebook criticism as anti-Semitic. Zuckerberg also promised to start holding quarterly calls to provide updates on how this massive, thorny effort is proceeding - further proof that Facebook is hoping that more openness will help solve its many problems.

"In just over a decade, Facebook has connected more than 2.2 billion people, a global nation unto itself that reshaped political campaigns, the advertising business and daily life around the world", the Times reported.

"I think it's very important that we get to the bottom of that, because it's very clear they went all out against their critics", Klobuchar said.

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The firm circulated a document to reporters that "cast Mr. Soros as the unacknowledged force behind what appeared to be a broad anti-Facebook movement", according to the New York Times, and it "pressed reporters to explore the financial connections between Mr. Soros's family or philanthropies" and groups critical of Facebook. "To now learn that you are active in promoting these distortions is beyond the pale", Gaspard said.

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