Facebook Accused Of Using Smear Tactics To Distract Critics

Facebook Accused Of Using Smear Tactics To Distract Critics

In a letter addressed to Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, the president of Soros' Open Society Foundations denounced Facebook's alleged actions and asked to speak with Sandberg in person.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that in October 2017 Facebook hired Washington-based consultancy firm Definers Public Affairs as it sought to recover its public image in the wake of allegations that Russian Federation spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on fake accounts that spread content seen by 126 million people meant to damage Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and boost support for her Republican rival Donald Trump.

The year's negative news didn't affect Facebook's revenues, with last quarter's financial statement reporting a 33% jump.

"As you know, there is a concerted right-wing effort the world over to demonize Mr. Soros and his foundations, which I lead-an effort which has contributed to death threats and the delivery of a pipe bomb to Mr. Soros' home".

"To suggest that we weren't interested in knowing the truth, or we wanted to hide what we knew, or that we tried to prevent investigations, is simply untrue", Sandberg wrote tonight in a Facebook post.

"The notion that your company, at your direction, actively engaged in the same behavior to try to discredit people exercising their First Amendment rights to protest Facebook's role in disseminating vile propaganda is frankly astonishing to me", Gaspard continued.

This announcement came during a conference call during which Mr. Zuckerberg has mainly had to explain the revelations of the New York Times on the use by Facebook of a company's public relations to the controversial methods, which he has acknowledged that it should never have been mandated.

Still, supporters of Soros are not happy, citing the rising anti-Semitism against the megadonor and philanthropist. In a January 25 speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Soros called Facebook and Google a "menace" and called for "regulatory authorities to protect society against them".

However, Facebook noted that it has now ended its contract with Definers.

The company hired Washington, DC political consultancy Definers Public Affairs, which specialises in opposition research, to carry out the campaign, according to the report.

"All of our work is based on publicly-available documents and information".

Zuckerberg added, however, that anti-Facebook activism "was not a spontaneous grassroots effort, it was well-funded".

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, told reporters she will be sending a letter to Facebook and the Justice Department.

"Me personally, I didn't know we were working with them", Zuckerberg said during today's Q&A.

In July of this year, as a Facebook executive testified before a congressional committee, anti-Facebook demonstrators barged into the room and held up a sign depicting Zuckerberg and Sandberg - who are both Jewish - as the twin heads of an octopus with its tentacles around the world. "She has been a very important partner to me and will continue to be".

Paul Levy: Interestingly what you say is, of course, what has now is being called generation Z, the kind of post-millennial generation are being seen to be leading these traditional social media platforms, along with things like fake news.

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