Facebook Executives sponsor promotional videos-on-demand service got into argumentative terms with reports on Wednesday at Television Critics Association in Beverly Hills. The issue was regarding the presence of a legal conspiracy site on a social media platform, Fox News, and Infowars.
The problem arose when Vice President of Facebook’s Video section, Fidji Simo was enquired on their platform about Infowars stories while the introduction of new Watch entertainment shows on Facebook.
Simo replied to the inquiry, “To be totally transparent, I find Infowars to be absolutely atrocious.” He continued saying, “That being said, we have the hard job of balancing freedom of expression and safety. So the way we navigate that is we think there’s a pretty big difference between what is allowed on Facebook and what gets distribution. So what we’re trying to do is make it so that if you are saying something that’s untrue on Facebook — you’re allowed to say it as long as you’re an authentic person and you adhere to our community standards — but we’re trying to make it so it doesn’t get that much distribution… We don’t always get it right, as you can imagine, it’s very complicated, but that’s sort of our principle for dealing with information.”
A reporter asked him regarding the matter of limiting distribution.
Simo answered, “When we have something that we think — that a fact checker has told is probably not true, or a lot of our audience is telling us is not true, we just limit distribution. We tell our algorithms that this is probably not something we want to see distributed widely. So that’s one way. Another way, a lot of how misinformation spreads, is by people sharing the content… We actually pop up a module that says, ‘Hey you’re about to share something our fact checker thinks is inaccurate, you may not want to do that.’ That decreases distribution very dramatically, north of 80 percent, that’s very effective at reducing the spread of it.”
Reporter again enquired, “One of the most prominent organizations you’re working with is Fox News, and they’re sort of incorrigible about pro-life rating a lot of misinformation. Can you speak to your reasoning behind that? Why would you want to work with an organization like that when, as you said, you’re trying to limit the spread of false information?
Global creative strategy head of Facebook, Rick Van Veen replied on behalf of Simo saying, “Yeah, well, given that we have limited time. I’d like to keep it — Fidji and I don’t lead the news organization. Campbell Brown leads that…”
Another reporter from the back directly asked Simo to answer the question.
Simo replied, “We have limited time…”
Another reported said to Simo that they will give him time.
Simo said, “We have a range of new show we’re presenting…”
The first reporter again asked him that Fox News is still every day on Highline, including the programming list of the weekend.
Simo replied, “So is CNN…”
Reporters rudely said that this was done by some chortle in the public, mainly because they don’t even consider CNN and Fox News distantly compatible considering its level of accuracy.
“We are really trying to show a range of programming that shows the range of the political spectrum,” said Simo.