OCTOBER 20, 2020
- Mark Zuckerberg said Thursday that the US presidential election will be a “test” of Facebook’s attempts to prevent misinformation and foreign interference.
- Zuckerberg also warned of “civil unrest” following Election Day, echoing a warning he made in September.
- His comments come after Facebook has been trying to stamp out false information and hate speech ahead of Election Day, and is enforcing new rules around political adverts.
- Facebook has taken down more than 100 networks, including from Russia, Iran since the 2016 US election, Zuckerberg said.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Thursday the US presidential election will be a “test” of the social media platform’s attempts to stop foreign interference and misinformation.
The company has been enforcing new rules around political adverts, and trying to battle against false information and hate speech ahead of the November 3 Election Day. An October 16 analysis found the company was unable, or in some cases, unwilling to enforce its own policies.
“Next week will certainly be a test for Facebook,” Zuckerberg said on a call Thursday to discuss the company’s better-than-expected quarterly earnings, per Bloomberg.
“Election integrity is and will be an ongoing challenge,” he said.
Russia used Facebook to try to sway the 2016 election — Zuckerberg said the company has got better at stopping foreign interference since then. “In the years since, we’ve taken down more than 100 networks, including from Russia, Iran, and China and we block millions of potentially abusive accounts every day,” Zuckerberg said during the call.
He warned of possible “civil unrest” in the days and weeks following the election, echoing warnings he made in September.
“I’m worried that with our nation so divided, and election results potentially taking days or weeks to be finalized, there’s a risk of civil unrest across the country.”
Zuckerberg said the focus on election safety will continue the week after the election. “I also know that our work doesn’t stop after November 3,” he said, adding: “We will keep anticipating new threats, evolving our approach.”
Facebook will ban all political ads indefinitely after the election.
The founder of the social media platform said in a Facebook post in September that it would crack down on conspiracy groups like QAnon and militias around the presidential election.
In May, the company publicly tore itself apart over Zuckerberg’s decision to allow a post from President Donald Trump about the George Floyd protests in Minneapolis.
Courtesy/Source: Business Insider