Politics: Warren escalates Facebook fight with ad targeting Zuckerberg - - PressFrom - US
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Politics Warren escalates Facebook fight with ad targeting Zuckerberg

22:50  14 october  2019
22:50  14 october  2019 Source:   msn.com

Elizabeth Warren says she won't take major donations from big tech executives

  Elizabeth Warren says she won't take major donations from big tech executives The presidential candidate swears off donations more than $200 from executives in tech and finance."Money slithers through every part of our political system, corrupting democracy and taking power away from the people," Warrren wrote in a post on her website. "Big companies and billionaires spend millions to push Congress to adopt or block legislation.

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has escalated her tiff with Facebook by running an ad — on Facebook — taking aim at its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg.

It's the latest example of growing resentment of Big Tech by Republicans and Democrats alike.

How to watch Mark Zuckerberg's speech about 'voice and free expression' Thursday

  How to watch Mark Zuckerberg's speech about 'voice and free expression' Thursday The Facebook boss will livestream his comments about "the challenges that more voice and the internet introduce," as well as global threats to free expression."It's the most comprehensive take I've written about my views, why I believe voice is important, how giving people voice and bringing people together go hand in hand, how we might address the challenges that more voice and the internet introduce, and the major threats to free expression around the world," he wrote on his Facebook page Wednesday.

The list of grievances is long: Companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon are too big and powerful. They're bad for privacy, public discourse, democracy and small business. They're spying on us, contributing to economic inequality and hooking us and our children on addictive, useless services. The companies, of course, object to these characterizations.

Warren, who in March proposed breaking up big tech companies, began running a text ad on Facebook last Thursday to take aim at Zuckerberg.

"Breaking news: Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook just endorsed Donald Trump for re-election," the ad reads. It then goes on to say that while this isn't true, Zuckerberg has "given Donald Trump free rein to lie" on Facebook.

Warren's ad is taking issue with Facebook's policy of not fact-checking politicians' speech or ads, the way it has outside parties fact-check news stories and other posts. Facebook has refused to remove a misleading video ad from President Donald Trump's campaign targeting Democrat Joe Biden.

Mark Zuckerberg on lies in political ads: ‘I don’t think it’s right for a private company to censor politicians’

  Mark Zuckerberg on lies in political ads: ‘I don’t think it’s right for a private company to censor politicians’ Facebook’s CEO rallies people around the First AmendmentZuckerberg’s speech, which amounted to a rallying cry for the First Amendment during a time when speech rights are under siege globally, acknowledged the fact that Facebook profits off misinformation — but said that’s not why the company decided to allow inaccurate ads to remain on the platform:

FILE - In this Oct. 2, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks during a gun safety forum in Las Vegas.   Warren proposed breaking up big tech companies in March. She garnered immediate support, even from rivals such as Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican who retweeted Warren for what he said was the first time. Cruz said “she’s right — Big Tech has way too much power to silence Free Speech.” (AP Photo/John Locher, File)© Provided by The Associated Press FILE - In this Oct. 2, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks during a gun safety forum in Las Vegas. Warren proposed breaking up big tech companies in March. She garnered immediate support, even from rivals such as Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican who retweeted Warren for what he said was the first time. Cruz said “she’s right — Big Tech has way too much power to silence Free Speech.” (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

Political speech and tech companies' role in spreading or stifling it has been an ongoing issue for both sides. Sen. Kamala Harris, a California Democrat, urged Twitter to suspend Trump's account for violating the service's rules, while Republican Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri is battling what he considers tech companies' bias against conservatives. Hawley has also told Zuckerberg that he should sell off WhatsApp and Instagram.

Mark Zuckerberg defends free speech on Facebook

  Mark Zuckerberg defends free speech on Facebook Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to the stage at Georgetown today to defend freedom of expression. Most recently, Facebook has been criticized for allowing politicians to post misleading ads. But Zuckerberg is calling for more free speech and cautioned against "potentially cracking down too much" on social networks. In an interview with The Washington Post, Zuckerberg says he too worries "about an erosion of truth." But, he added, "I don'tIn an interview with The Washington Post, Zuckerberg says he too worries "about an erosion of truth." But, he added, "I don't think people want to live in a world where you can only say things that tech companies decide are 100 percent true.

The companies, in general, are trying to maintain a neutral stance, even if that draws the ire of politicians as divergent as the president and those trying to impeach him. In response to Warren, Facebook tweeted that voters rather than companies ought to be the ones weighing candidates' speech.

FILE - In this Oct. 10, 2019 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally at the Target Center in Minneapolis. Republicans and Democrats don’t agree on health care, immigration or taxing the rich. But one subject draws critics from both parties: Big Tech.  Trump has been uneven in his criticisms. Amazon has been a frequent target, though that is due in part to CEO Jeff Bezos’s ownership of The Washington Post. He’s met with Zuckerberg privately, but he’s also tweeted that “Facebook was always anti-Trump” and accused it of colluding with the news media against him. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)© Provided by The Associated Press FILE - In this Oct. 10, 2019 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally at the Target Center in Minneapolis. Republicans and Democrats don’t agree on health care, immigration or taxing the rich. But one subject draws critics from both parties: Big Tech. Trump has been uneven in his criticisms. Amazon has been a frequent target, though that is due in part to CEO Jeff Bezos’s ownership of The Washington Post. He’s met with Zuckerberg privately, but he’s also tweeted that “Facebook was always anti-Trump” and accused it of colluding with the news media against him. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

Social media services are "caught between a rock and a hard place," said Andrew Guess, a Princeton University political scientist who studies social media and its effects on political opinion.

Facebook CEO Zuckerberg Defends Policy Allowing Misleading or False Campaign Ads

  Facebook CEO Zuckerberg Defends Policy Allowing Misleading or False Campaign Ads Facebook has come under fire for approving an ad for President Trump's 2020 reelection campaign accusing rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter of corruption.“People worry, and I worry deeply, too, about an erosion of truth,” Zuckerberg told the Washington Post. “At the same time, I don’t think people want to live in a world where you can only say things that tech companies decide are 100 percent true.

Blocking or suspending accounts for speech can prompt complaints of political bias or censorship, but a hands-off approach may be viewed as a free pass to politicians like Trump.

"Anything they do is going to attract criticism," Guess said. "That, of course, makes them a target."

Beyond discourse and privacy, antitrust concerns have emerged as a major concern for lawmakers and candidates. This wasn't the case in 2016, when grumbling about the outsized power of tech was largely confined to activists and those on the most liberal end of the spectrum.

Still, while there have been congressional hearings, investigations and fines, including a record $5 billion against Facebook, little has changed for Big Tech.

Democrats and Republicans may agree that Big Tech has problems, but they often differ on what those problems are — and how to fix them.

A Republican-controlled Senate is unlikely to pass legislation that seems too anti-business. That includes breaking up tech companies seen as too monopolistic. The same likely goes for any privacy law that restricts companies' ability to target ads to their liking. An ongoing impeachment probe makes any congressional action even less likely.

Still, talking up Big Tech's problems has proven to be popular political rhetoric.

Warren warns Facebook may help reelect Trump 'and profit off of it'

  Warren warns Facebook may help reelect Trump 'and profit off of it' Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) criticized Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday over a speech he made that day at Georgetown University, alleging that the social media founder's comments show "how unprepared Facebook is to handle the 2020 election.""Mark Zuckerberg's speech today shows how little he learned from 2016, and how unprepared Facebook is to handle the 2020 election," Warren tweeted.

Warren's call to break up tech companies has even garnered support from rivals such as Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican who retweeted Warren for what he said was the first time. Cruz said "she's right — Big Tech has way too much power to silence Free Speech."

Sen. Bernie Sanders, another leading Democratic candidate, has also said breaking up Amazon, Google and Apple is "something we should definitely take a look at."

Trump has been uneven in his criticisms. Amazon has been a frequent target, though that is due in part to CEO Jeff Bezos's ownership of The Washington Post. He's met with Zuckerberg privately, but he's also tweeted that "Facebook was always anti-Trump" and accused it of colluding with the news media against him.

Amid all this, at least in public, the companies have mostly kept a low profile. But there are occasional glimpses of behind-the-scenes activity. Leaked audio from an internal Facebook meeting in July captured Zuckerberg acknowledging that if "someone like" Warren is elected, he expects Facebook to fight back — and prevail — against efforts to break it up in court. But he added: "And does that still suck for us? Yeah."

Amazon, by contrast, briefly tried to debate the candidates on Twitter.

In April, after Warren complained that Amazon and other big tech companies have "too much power," the company responded by pointing the finger at its main rival: "Walmart is much larger; Amazon is less than 4% of U.S. retail."

When Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said in a TV interview in June that Amazon pays workers "starvation wages," the company tweeted that she "is just wrong."

Expect the political pushback to continue, from both parties, said Joshua Tucker, co-director of New York University's Social Media and Political Participation Lab.

"It's a bipartisan issue," he said. "But the right and the left are criticizing it for different reasons."

___

Associated Press writers David Klepper in Providence, Rhode Island, and Joseph Pisani in New York contributed to this story.

Mark Zuckerberg knows he comes across as 'robotic' .
The Facebook CEO tells NBC News he's working to improve his communications skills.The Facebook CEO made the admission in a wide-ranging interview with NBC  Nightly News with Lester Holt that was broadcast Monday evening. The interview comes as Facebook unveils several initiatives that show how it's preparing for election security as the race for the White House ramps up.

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