Did Facebook influence election outcome?

Facebook CEO denies that the sharing of fake news stories on social media had impact on US election.

Gary Willig,

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg
Reuters

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg defended the social media platform from accusations that the sharing of fake news stories on it contributed to the stunning victory of Donald Trump in Tuesday's US Presidential election.

"The idea that fake news on Facebook influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea," he said.

"I think there is a certain profound lack of empathy in asserting that the only reason someone could have voted the way they did is because they saw fake news." he added. "If you believe that then I don't think you have internalized the message Trump supporters are trying to send in this election."

It is easy to spread false information over social media, and fake news stories, such as a story that claimed that Pope Francis had endorsed Trump, were shared hundreds of thousands of times on Facebook. Follow-up stories debunking the fake stories were not shared as often as the original stories.

Facebook was accused of aiding Democrats and liberals earlier this year, after it was reported that moderators were deliberately burying news articles from right-wing sources and pushing news artilcles from left-wing sources.


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