TechSpot

Mark Zuckerberg denies fake Facebook news stories influenced the election

By midian182
Nov 11, 2016
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  1. As some people start to wonder how Donald Trump beat the odds and won the election, one theory put forward claims the number of fake pro-Trump stories that appeared on Facebook in the run-up to the vote played a major part in his victory. Mark Zuckerberg, who is no fan of the President-elect, says this just isn’t true.

    Speaking at the Technonomy conference, the Facebook CEO told interviewer David Kirkpatrick: “Personally I think the idea that fake news on Facebook, which is a very small amount of the content, influenced the election in any way — I think is a pretty crazy idea. Voters make decisions based on their lived experience.”

    Zuckerberg added it took a “profound lack of empathy” to conclude that a person voted the way they did based on a fake social media news story. “If you believe that, then I don’t think you have internalized the message the Trump supporters are trying to send in this election,” he said.

    The claim that Facebook had become a “filter bubble” – an echo chamber where people only saw the same views they held – was also dismissed. Zuckerberg argued that the site exposes users to a wider variety of opinions than the traditional media.

    Even if 90% of your friends are Democrats, probably 10% are Republicans. Even if you live in some state or country you will know some people in another state, another country. That means that the information you are getting through the social system is going to be inherently more diverse than you would have gotten through news stations.

    After Facebook fired its entire Trending Topics editorial team and replaced it with an algorithmic process earlier this year, the section started surfacing fake news items. An untrue story about Fox News anchor Megan Kelly being sacked from the channel for secretly supporting Hillary reached the top of the trending list after the change.

    Zuckerberg did, however, admit that he has concerns about how Facebook affects the democratic process. “I really care about this. I want what we do to have a good impact on the world. I want people to have a diversity of information.”

    Permalink to story.

     
  2. domyz

    domyz TS Rookie Posts: 17   +13

    Funny how many websites are searching for an explanation to the Trump election. This would have not happen if Hilary would've been elected. There would be a big annoying media celebration.

    Left wing politics media invasion and media over-influence is what they should be trying to explain. The majority has spoken, not the media-establishment team. Just respect the majority and live with it. Voters are never wrong, remember that. Not any media is more clever than the people, and no media should have the right to influence people choice.

    What we live is the first time that the media influence did not work, and we should be very happy with that.

    Long life to democracy, stop sharing the left politics invasion propaganda. Let people choose, and respect them.
     
  3. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 1,657   +309

    Could 'fake news' be more important than folks realize - no matter which end of the political spectrum you are? 'Fake news' when accepted as truth (even if uncovered later) diminishes our confidence in what is really happening. Wouldn't you like to see that corrected in some manner?
     
  4. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,666   +776

    JFK was well known as the first president that mastered the media (television) and got himself elected at a time where people were just getting used to seeing the presidential candidates interacting directly with each other. George W. Bush had his communications director buy up as many television and radio stations prior and during his campaign to spread "his message" and it was largely that work that got him elected (not counting a few hanging chads). Facebook is just another media outlet that can be manipulated to any particular candidates advantage or disadvantage. There are so many charges of media manipulation, electioneering, etc. that it's hard to define where it starts and stops.

    If you're sincerely looking for blame "follow the money" and the first stop has to be the Supreme Court that stripped away all financial restrictions on elections, thus giving the greatest say to the person with the most money, thus stripping away the concept of "one man, one vote". Zuckerburg is no less guilty of playing in that arena and it is entirely legal for him to do so. One of the problems with laws lagging so far behind technology is they don't address the newer communication systems.

    The easiest way would be for a law on internet sites just like exists on TV & Radio called the "Equal Time" law where stations must, upon request, grant an equal amount of time to opposing candidates. You put that into effect and a lot of web sites will run from politics because it will eat into their bottom line quickly.
     
  5. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,508   +501

    If someone is able to put a good idea into peoples heads, it doesn't matter how much coverage it has, it will spread. Not saying that Trump's ideas are good or anything, but Clinton was not able to do this, even when she had all that coverage and support.

    Repeating that the sky is purple won't make it purple, nor you will convince people of it for as much as you repeat it.
     
    SirChocula and Uncle Al like this.
  6. mojorisin23

    mojorisin23 TS Booster Posts: 124   +23

    I'm pretty sure the millenials that use facebook all voted for hitlery anyway... so I doubt it mattered at all.

    maybe finally people just woke up and saw the phony political class for what it really is!
     
  7. Kenrick

    Kenrick TS Booster Posts: 187   +88

    I dont really understand. USA was great because mainly of its constitution.Now that the election process made Trump the president, these famous and rich people would stop his presidency just because you dont like him. Even he has the craziest ideas, move on and go on. Why not just make USA a communist where the elite, rappers, athletes select the president.
     
    psycros likes this.
  8. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +56

    I thought zuckerberg gave facebook away and doesn't own it no more.
     
  9. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,554   +2,897

    That would be the first I have heard of it.
     
  10. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,323   +710

    That's exactly what the American left wants, and some of their most revered icons have stated this repeatedly. Their never-ending crusade to replace the electoral college with a popular vote is all about making sure those outside the liberal echo chamber have no voice. The so-called "progressives" have always been fascists.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016
    SirChocula likes this.
  11. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +56

  12. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,554   +2,897

    I remember that story. I didn't interpret that story as giving their company away. I interpreted the story as Mark giving 99% of their current (at the time) share value over time. A business deal that would give back and not bankrupt them or lose market share. I don't know maybe my thoughts are twisted.
     
  13. commanderasus

    commanderasus TS Enthusiast Posts: 52   +9

    Facebook - a so called social media place where in the beginning people could share photos and videos of family and friends. Right now you have to provide Facebook with government approved ID, phone numbers etc,. What right does Facebook have to request this information. They locked out my kids Facebook account who is named after their cat because he did not have the "proper id" and could not "prove" he was the owner of this account. And all the time their account was plastered with news stories and "suggestions" which had nothing to do with anything. The real questino is "Who is the puppet masters" that are really behind Facebook?
     
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,693   +1,882

    The story I got at the core, (although I read the Techspot version), was the media busting Zuckerbergr's stones, comparing him to Bill Gates. Basically, "Gates is giving all his money away, are you going to do the same thing"? "And If so, when are you going to start"?

    I didn't get the impression that the idea was Zuckerberg's alone, but rather the media was trying to put words in his mouth.

    But then again, I could have gotten it all wrong too. Or we could be dealing with completely different hype.

    The whole affair sounds like the basis and run up to people getting that, "free Facebook stock", fraudulent email.

    Perhaps nobody did really understand the original conversation, and that's how con artists were able to to distort it.
     
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  15. EClyde

    EClyde TS Guru Posts: 706   +181

    I hope all the fake pro Trump had a positive effect.
     

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