Facebook’s fact-checkers, like the legacy media’s predominant accountability sites like Politifact and FactCheck.org, are biased in favor of progressive causes.
And now even CEO Mark Zuckerberg has admitted it.
Four Republican Senators called out the social media powerhouse earlier this month over censorship of a pro-life group’s post and videos that claimed abortion is not medically necessary. The fact-check that led to restrictions to access of the posts was written b – you guessed it – abortionists.
The “offending” posts were separate videos published on Facebook by Live Action: one featuring the group’s president, Lila Rose, and the other featured by neonatologist Dr. Kendra Kolb. The women claimed in each video that abortion is “never medically necessary.”
To fact-check the claims, Facebook enlisted Robin Schickler, an OB-GYN and fellow at the pro-abortion Physicians for Reproductive Health, and Daniel Grossman, director of Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health at the University of California, San Francisco. The pair deemed Live Action’s claims “inaccurate,” adding that “Certain medical conditions such as placenta previa and HELLP syndrome can make abortion a necessary medical procedure in order to prevent the mother’s death,” according to The Daily Caller.
The four senators – Mike Braun of Indiana, Kevin Cramer of North Dakota, Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri – rebutted the biased fact-check in a letter to Zuckerburg.
“This is a widely-held view, one shared by the thousands of members of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstretricians & Gynecologists, among others,” the Senators wrote. “As a result of the ‘false’ rating, Facebook suppressed Live Action’s website and Lila Rose’s Facebook Page, prohibited the organization from advertising and promoting its content, and notified users who had shared the videos that they had shared ‘false news.’”
The issue came up again last week when Zuckerberg visited lawmakers in Washington, where he admitted the use of the biased fact-checkers on Live Action’s video’s was wrong, in a meeting with Hawley.
“Just finished meeting w @facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg,” the Missouri senator tweeted. “Had a frank conversation. Challenged him to do two things to show FB is serious about bias, privacy & competition. 1) Sell WhatsApp & Instagram 2) Submit to independent, third-party audit on censorship. He said no to both.
“Zuckerberg admitted there ‘clearly was bias’ in the @LiveAction @LilaGraceRose censorship,” Hawley continued. “Said bias is ‘an issue we’ve struggled with for a long time.’”
Whether Hawley’s remedies would help correct the deeply embedded leftist/anti-free speech prejudice in Silicon Valley is questionable, but Rose – who said thousands of her Facebook followers were told in push notifications that she spreads ‘false’ news – said the problem is bigger than simple censorship.
“They lack transparency & honesty,” Rose tweeted last week. “They claim to be neutral but don’t act that way. They enjoy privileges as a platform, but act like a far-Left, politically motivated publisher. This affects ALL news & content shared on FB.”
Live Action, which also have exposed Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry through investigations and interviews, is extremely effective with messaging and persuasion. That’s why other liberal leaning social media platforms besides Facebook have censored the group as well.
“Live Action has been the target of censorship from multiple social media platforms, including…YouTube (which refused to run the organization’s ads), Twitter (which also banned the group’s ability to run ads), and Pinterest (which falsely labeled Live Action’s content as ‘pornographic’),” Breitbart reported.
Following the senators’ letter, according to Rose, Facebook removed the page violations for Live Action’s account. However, Facebook refused to apologize or set the record straight with the thousands of Live Action followers who received the phony fact-check notifications. Meanwhile the abortionists’ fact-check of Live Action remained on Facebook’s partner web site.
“@Facebook needs to do the right thing & update all @LiveAction followers that the ‘fact check’ was bogus,” Hawley tweeted.
So while Zuckerberg ‘fessed up to the struggle his company has endured with institutional bias, he refuses to do anything about it: Whether it’s setting the record straight, informing his customers of errors and falsehoods, instituting transparency measures, or even refunding advertising customers who have been wronged.
“Some say just move off the platform,” Rose tweeted. “(Facebook) has a user base of 2B+. Educational nonprofits like ours have developed followings of millions, investing hard-won $$ for years in order to share our content, because (Facebook) claimed they don’t censor content based on political viewpoint.”
So besides bias and non-transparency, Zuckerberg and Facebook have essentially stolen the money of groups like Live Action who have suffered unfair treatment on their platform.