Published: Fri, July 20, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Zuckerberg: Facebook won't ban Holocaust deniers

Zuckerberg: Facebook won't ban Holocaust deniers

His initial remarks set off intense criticism earlier this week.

Zuckerberg, who is Jewish, said in an interview with Recode that Facebook posts denying the Holocaust took place would not be removed automatically.

What happened next was predictable to everyone but Zuckerberg: The Internet blew up.

Zuckerberg brought up an example that he said hits closer to home.

Swisher asked Zuckerberg why Facebook allowed users to post conspiracy theories such as Holocaust denial on the social network.

"But look, I designed the platform, so if someone's going to get fired for this, it should be me."
That said, I don't want to leave the impression that we didn't care about security or didn't have thousands of people working on it before then. I don't think that they're intentionally getting it wrong ...

The idea that Holocaust deniers have malicious intent in regards to the content they share-that they are generally bigots or white nationalists spreading anti-Semitic misinformation, not simply misguided people who've accidentally flubbed their words-has apparently not occurred to Mark Zuckerberg.

"This position is so freakish, it's hard to know where to begin", writes Yair Rosenberg in The Atlantic. "Facebook has a moral and ethical obligation not to allow its dissemination", Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement.

"Holocaust denial is the quintessential 'fake news, '" said Abraham Cooper of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a rights group named for a famed Nazi hunter.

The justice ministry also said that Facebook and other big social media platforms must report to officials by the end of July on how effective they had been in deleting hate messages from their sites.

Presently, Facebook bans content that directly calls for violence but the new policy will cover fake news that has the potential to stir up physical harm which includes both written posts and manipulated images, CNET reported.

Zuckerberg backtracked later on Wednesday, saying in an email to Swisher that he did not mean to defend the intent of Holocaust deniers, according to a copy of the email posted by Swisher.

Because Facebook is used to communicate by billions of people around the world, the company assessed that its policies have a significant impact on the freedom of speech.

The social networking company has faced questions about being a source for false information that can inflame societal tensions.

Trump campaign staffers that BuzzFeed News spoke with said they were disappointed with Facebook for not publicly acknowledging their work.

By Facebok's own estimates, 126 million people saw Russia-linked content during the 2016 election cycle. At KPBS, an attempt to promote a story about migrant children appearing in court without their parents was barred.

Leathern added, "If you are running ads in the US about electoral or political issues you will need to go through the authorizations process".

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