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Mark Zuckerberg Doesn’t Care If Social Media Promotes Lies

The Facebook CEO is set to make all the same mistakes he made in 2016.

Facebook co-founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Energy and Commerce Committee in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill April 11, 2018 in Washington, DC. This is the second day of testimony before Congress by Zuckerberg, 33, after it was reported that 87 million Facebook users had their personal information harvested by Cambridge Analytica, a British political consulting firm linked to the Trump campaign.

Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t care. The Facebook CEO continues to deny that Facebook’s proliferation of fake news undoubtedly swayed the 2016 presidential election, despite getting roasted in multiple congressional hearings in 2018.

Now, the tech world’s Ash the android has weighed in on the Trump/Twitter fight, and his views are predictably self-serving. In the wake of Twitter fact-checking Donald Trump’s tweet about mail-in voting, the angry president has announced an executive order against social media companies (the details of which have yet to be revealed as of this posting.)

In an interview with Fox News’ Dana Perino, Zuckerberg said he disagreed with Twitter’s move and said he didn’t believe social media sites should be “the arbiter of truth.”

“We have a different policy than Twitter on this,” Zuckerberg said, adding “I just believe strongly that Facebook shouldn’t be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online, … I think in general, private companies probably shouldn’t be — especially these platform companies — shouldn’t be in the position of doing that.”

Twitter chief Jack Dorsey responded by saying that his company will “continue to point out incorrect or disputed information about elections globally. And we will admit to and own any mistakes we make.” He added, “This does not make us an ‘arbiter of truth,’ … Our intention is to connect the dots of conflicting statements and show the information in dispute so people can judge for themselves. More transparency from us is critical so folks can clearly see the why behind our actions.”

A spokesperson for Twitter followed up on Dorsey’s statement, saying that the president’s tweets held “potentially misleading information about voting processes and have been labeled to provide additional context around mail-in ballots.”

While Trump talks a big game about punishing social media companies, he can’t really enforce anything without approval from Congress. Still, Zuckerberg remarked that “In general, I think a government choosing to censor a platform because they’re worried about censorship doesn’t exactly strike me as the right reflex there.”

But make no mistake: Zuckerberg isn’t at all concerned about censorship. His motives are purely financial, as is his support of Trump and other Republicans who favor less restrictions on tech companies. Facebook makes millions from Trump’s campaign ads, which are riddled with lies. In fact, Zuck is so committed to supporting misinformation that Facebook quietly changed their advertising rules to make an exception for political ads.

In their ongoing race to the bottom, it seems like Twitter may be slowly growing a conscience while Facebook barrels further into the abyss.

(via HuffPost, image: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.