Facebook’s new political ad-buying rules are sabotaging grassroots candidates in June’s first primaries—and hurting ballot initiatives with upcoming filing deadlines—according to conservatives and progressives who say their campaigns are being suppressed.
A federal suit filed in December claimed older workers missed out on job opportunities because ads on Facebook targeted younger users. Now plaintiffs say Facebook’s tools and algorithm gave employers ways to intensify the effects of such targeting.
The U.S. Cattlemen’s Association, however, is appalled that new forms of protein are being sold under names such as Beyond Beef and Impossible Burger. Vegetarian and vegan substitutes for meat have gained a significant share of the market, partly because of health considerations and partly because of aversion to killing harmless animals for food. But the livestock group fears that consumers are being cruelly misled.
Kellyanne Conway threw a tantrum of her own when asked to explain Trump’s latest Twitter tirades. And she wound up making a devastating point against her boss. Trump posted a series of panicky tweets Saturday morning, fretting about the prospect of his personal attorney “flipping” on him. On CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday morning, host Dana Bash asked Conway to explain the tweets.
Conservative and pro-Trump Facebook pages, most affiliated with fake news websites, are recycling memes created by Russian troll companies like the Internet Research Agency (IRA), which the social network has banned from its platform. Media Matters found 24 posts dating back to December 2017 from 11 right-wing pages that contained memes bearing watermarks from Russian troll-run social media accounts.
Public anger at the ills unleashed by social media currently burns hottest on Facebook — namely, its profiting off political lies posted by masked operatives. Many also blame Facebook for stoking the modern hell of FOMO — fear of missing out. We speak of the feelings of inadequacy fanned by friends’ jolly vacation and party posts, presentations that make many think everyone is having a better time than they are.
Zuckerberg this week at the Senate hearing on Facebook’s failures regarding privacy, fake news and foreign interference in elections: “It was my mistake, and I’m sorry. I started Facebook. I run it. And I’m responsible for what happens here.” Well, that makes us feel a whole lot better. Zuckerberg wisely dressed up for the grilling but still issued kid-in-a-T-shirt apologies.
“There’s an issue of content discrimination,” said Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Washington. “It is not a problem unique to Facebook. There’s a number of high-profile examples of edge providers engaging in blocking and censoring religious and conservative political content… What is Facebook doing to ensure that its users are treated fairly and objectively by content reviewers?”
Three-thousand Google employees have signed a letter protesting the internet giant’s contract with the Defense Department to develop artificial intelligence in order to analyze imagery collected by drones. The employees are calling on Google CEO Sundar Pichai to cancel the project immediately and to “enforce a clear policy stating that neither Google nor its contractors will ever build warfare technology.”
One of 2018’s most remarkable campaign stories is unfolding on the back roads and small-town squares of rural Texas, where Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke, a three-term congressman from El Paso, is within striking distance of unseating arguably the nation’s most despised senator, Texas Republican Ted Cruz.
A number of Facebook pages, accounts, and groups pushing fake news and hyperpartisan content to Americans are linked to websites registered in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The pages have nearly 200,000 followers combined and the groups have nearly 60,000 followers combined. This is another example of foreign actors spreading fake news on Facebook.