In a nearly seven-minute monologue on his show on Wednesday, occasionally shouting, MSNBC host “Morning Joe” said the Facebook director posed a threat to democracy.
Social media, including Facebook(full board), has long been home to conspiracy theories and hate groups. Recently, a particularly inflammatory speech promoted by President Donald Trump and others has caused general outrage about the role of social media in our society.
“Look at this page where there is a right-wing extremist group that is literally targeting men and women who dedicate their lives to protecting American citizens,” Scarborough said. “And of course they excrete their conspiracy theory by giving money to Mark Zuckerberg by giving Facebook. Now that’s bad enough, isn’t it? But Mark Zuckerberg promotes extremism because Mark Zuckerberg actually – his website, the Zuckerberg site, has to actually set up ad promotions that actually push people towards extremist places that kill federal officers. “
Tech Transparency Project, a research initiative of a non-profit watchdog monitoring group called the Accountability Campaign, released this spring concluding that more than 60% of the 125 Boogaloo groups identified on Facebook have released since January and picked up money since the start of the Covid-19 closure. In April, a bhagaloo devotee was arrested in Texas for allegedly trying to find and kill police officers while filming on Facebook live, under the Southern Poverty Act.
Scarborough echoed a point made by Facebook critics for some time: Facebook makes money when people deal with its platform, regardless of – or – as Scarborough argues – the fact that many Facebook posts are fake, inflammatory, misleading. or intentional misinformation.
Zuckerberg said last week that he was “appalled” by Trump’s remarks on protests across the country against racial injustice. He said Trump’s posts on Facebook shared rhetoric, but that he refused to remove them from the page because Facebook wants to inform people about the views of their politicians. Still, Facebook struggled to divert hate speech from its platform – whether it was politicians or not.
“Extremist groups and demagogues, authoritarian-type politicians here and around the world use these sites to promote hatred, kill federal officers, and undermine American democracy,” Scarborough said. “These people are becoming billionaires, and Mark Zuckerberg is said to be sad because he is making billions of dollars for lying by spreading hate groups spreading on Zuckerberg’s website and [Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl] The Sandberg website is so rude. “
Scarborough called on politicians to act to hold Facebook accountable, expressing their support for a potential proposal by the Trump administration that, according to Wall Street Journal, would deprive social media of some of the protections granted to them by Congress in section 230 of the 1996 Communication on Decency Communication. That law prevents Internet companies from being held accountable for the actions of people who engage in their platforms.
Trump is threatening to take away the protection of Section 230 because of what he sees on social media as an anti-conservative bias. Twitter(TWTR) they said some of Trump’s tweets related to mail voting and about the protests violated their policy, angering the president.
But Scarborough argued that the abolition of Department 230 should hold Facebook and its leaders accountable for hate speech and other activities, including allowing Trump to continue repeatedly on social media to imply that Scarborough is responsible for the former official’s death.
“If Congress doesn’t do something to make Mark Zuckerberg accountable and make Mark Zuckerberg’s website accountable for the hatred and lies and slander spreading on his website, American democracy remains in jeopardy,” Scarborough argued. “Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg are only interested in protecting their billions. Well, when you discover that a right-wing extremist group is being overthrown by a federal officer, and that’s Mark Zuckerberg whose platform promotes that group by pushing people into that group, then his words are meaningless.”
Facebook did not respond to a request for comment.