Accusations have been leveled against tech giant Facebook over the apparent censorship of Right-leaning news,
As social media grows from public outreach to actual news sourcing (much to the outrage of broadcast and print journalists across the world), some apparent bias has been revealed regarding Facebook’s unique news tool: the ‘Trending News’ feed.
We all know it for cycling stories of varying style and substance, but recent revelations indicate conservative leaning posts may be discouraged or, even, outright rejected.
Gizmodo takes credit for the early research and interview work on both Facebook’s ‘Trending News’ methodology and, far more specifically for the purposes of this article, these potential shenanigans
Facebook’s response, though, is predictable and can be cited by The Guardian. Facebook is quoted as claiming ‘Trending News’ is only dominated by topics that have lately become popular on Facebook, regardless of mounting evidence to the contrary.
Gizmodo’s interviewees indicate that contracted employees working for Facebook were given Orwellian levels of authority regarding what was blocked from ‘Trending News’ for Facebook users. This authority was allegedly used to suppress certain politically Right-leaning topics and stories. This stands in a stark contrast to Facebook’s claims of only posting what matters to users: not personalized political views masking as trends.
The implications are dark and dazzling, but it would seem that Facebook has (intentionally or not) made concerted efforts to impede the spread of knowledge based on political ties.
Regardless of Facebook’s political leanings and lobbying outside of its social media platform, which we can take as a given, it’s not something many commenters expected to find being pushed inside the social media behemoth.
One worries about the fate of the world so bound to social media for news, given the now apparent bias tied to such news sourcing.