After the 2016 election, news broke that Russian trolls
and other bad-faith actors had used social media giant Facebook to spread lies and sew confusion, division, and hate within the American public. Their objective, use falsehoods and propaganda to convince the Americans to vote for their preferred candidate, Donald Trump.
After Trump won the election, Russians operatives celebrated by popping Champagne
and toasting to having made America great again.
The lies they spread via Facebook and other social media platforms made a mockery of our democracy.
Facebook, taking stock of the debacle that was partly their doing, then said they would take measures to stop something like this from ever happening again.
But what a difference a few years make. It's been nearly 3 years since the 2016 disaster election that put Trump in office. But it looks as if Facebook is still ok with lies being spread on their site.
At least if those ads are from the Trump campaign and he's paying big money for them.
Recently, Joe Biden wrote a letter demanding that Facebook take down an ad from the Trump reelection campaign that spreads demonstrably false claims that Biden abused the power of his office to benefit himself and his son Hunter Biden. There is absolutely no evidence of this. Facebook rejected Biden's request
and said when it comes to political speech (read, paid political ads) the company will not fact check. In the same breath, they say they have a "respect for the democratic process." Yet a democracy can only function with an educated public that can make wise decisions in their interest. The public cannot do this if the information they receive is false. Trump has proven he will stop at nothing to unfairly win an election, whether it is tacitly benefiting from Russian trolls, privately coercing allies to sabotage a rival campaign, publicly begging the world's largest communist state to do the same or lying, boldfaced, to the American public.
Now, Facebook's allowing him to spread his lies in the most viral, and dangerous way possible, all because they can make a profit - the Trump campaign has spent more than $5 million on Facebook ads this year. Compare that to $700,000 spent by the Biden campaign.
As the world's largest social media platform, Facebook has a responsibility to do better. We have seen how lies and manipulation on social media can change the course of elections. They can infect the public with false ideas and contort reality all to the benefit of an unscrupulous candidate. By allowing candidates like Trump or whoever it may be to lie to hundreds of millions of Americans with no checks is to put the democratic process, they claim to respect, at risk.Sign the petition and demand that Facebook not allow candidates or political action committees to spread lies on its platform.