MSNBC's Ari Melber challenges Mark Zuckerberg to answer questions about Facebook's problem with fake news and Russian propaganda
Melber: "Tell us whether your company's targeting for Russians did or didn't martch the Trump campaign's targeting"
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From the November 1 edition of MSNBC's The Beat with Ari Melber:
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ARI MELBER (HOST): Any fundamental changes require Mark Zuckerberg who didn’t testify today. He did make time to speak to Facebook investors today and announced record earnings but he’s not taking questions from Congress about Russia right now. So Mark, even if you’re not taking questions I do have some for you. And Mark, the first question is obvious. Why didn’t you realize Facebook had and has a problem? We know when Facebook serves up lies in the news section it tricks voters and it influences our politics. Why did you reject that as crazy?
At today’s hearings Facebook says it learned of some of these problems as early as 2015. And a Facebook investor warned you, Mark, prior to the 2016 election about bad actors exploiting Facebook to cause harm in politics. So Mark, when did you first learn that, one, fake news was some of the most popular content on Facebook during the general election; two, that Russians spent a hundred thousand dollars on Facebook ads, paying for some in rubles? Three, when did you learn that Russia was backing fake accounts to trick American voters?
Mark, we also want to ask you; should it be this easy to game Facebook? Americans do have a right to post most speech on the internet, no doubt. But fraud is not always speech and foreign espionage operatives have fewer rights. Can you also answer the question, Mark, that your board member ducked at her recent Washington trip? Just tell us whether your company’s targeting for Russians did or didn’t match the Trump campaign’s targeting. That's bigger than fake news. There's a Facebook problem of fake people here, bots, political catfishing, 40 million fake accounts that your company admitted to just today.