Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has indicated he would take a hands-off approach from vouching for online content amid the spat between Twitter chief Jack Dorsey and US President Donald Trump over the microblogging website fact-checking Mr Trump’s tweets.
Twitter had tagged two of Mr Trump’s tweets in which he claimed that more mail-in voting would lead to what he called a “rigged election” this November. There is no evidence that attempts are being made to rig the election, and under the tweets Twitter posted a link which read: “Get the facts about mail-in ballots.”
Mr Zuckerberg, however, indicated that Facebook – the world’s biggest social networking website – has a different policy in handling such matters.
“I just believe strongly that Facebook should not be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online,” Mr Zuckerberg said in an interview posted online by Fox News.
“I think, in general, private companies, especially these platform companies, shouldn’t be in the position of doing that,” he said.
After Twitter’s action, Mr Trump launched a tirade – on Twitter – in which he claimed that the political right in the US is being censored. “Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices. We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen,” Mr Trump tweeted.
For years, Twitter has been accused of ignoring the US President’s violation of platform rules with his daily, often hourly barrages of personal insults and inaccurate information sent to more than 80 million followers.
Mr Dorsey today reinforced his stance on pointing out “incorrect or disputed information about elections globally”. He appealed to “leave our employees out of this” as the face-off with Mr Trump is likely to escalate.
“Fact check: there is someone ultimately accountable for our actions as a company, and that’s me. Please leave our employees out of this. We’ll continue to point out incorrect or disputed information about elections globally. And we will admit to and own any mistakes we make,” Mr Dorsey tweeted.
“This does not make us an ‘arbiter of truth.’ Our intention is to connect the dots of conflicting statements and show the information in dispute so people can judge for themselves. More transparency from us is critical so folks can clearly see the why behind our actions,” said the Twitter CEO.