Facebook Ducks the Big Issue


Donald Trump Facebook Commentary It will continue for the time beingThe company announced yesterday. But it still hasn’t solved the central problem Trump created for social media platforms, and by extension American democracy.

The problem is that Trump Lying Approx continuously. Unlike many other politicians – including other new presidents, From both ends Continues to make false statements even after others have done so Documented Fake them. This behavior undermines the healthy functioning of American democracy, especially since Trump has such a large following.

His lies about the 2020 elections are the clearest example of this. They led tens of millions of people to believe a fictitious story about how Joe Biden won. They have become Loyalty test Within the Republican Party.

In Congress, Republicans Move to oust Blaise Cheney As one of their leaders after she said that the people who repeated Trump’s “big lie” were “turning their backs on the rule of law, poisoning our democratic system.” In many states, Republican lawmakers are using Trump’s artificial story to justify new laws Make voting more difficultEspecially in densely democratic areas. there direct connection Between Trump’s lies in the elections and weakening the right to vote.

But Facebook has determined that the health of American democracy is not its problem.

The company justification Her comment to Trump in January is not based on his lies but rather on his incitement to violence, before and during the January 6 attack on the Capitol by his supporters. The social networking site Facebook Continue to let Politicians spread many lies, saying that they did not want to control the truth. Distinguishing truth, opinion and falsehood can be really difficult – but Trump’s claims about election stealing are so Not an exact issue.

The issue here is not the perennial philosophical question of what truth is. It’s whether Facebook is willing to put up with obvious and poignant lies. So far, the company has decided that. A line has drawn somewhere between blatant lies and incitement to violence.

“Facebook’s approach to Trump’s attempts to undermine confidence in the integrity of the elections was weak and ineffective,” Richard Bannez, Professor of law at the University of California, Irvine, tell me. When Trump last year incorrectly described the mail vote as corrupt, for example, Facebook left the post and instead added a link to a website where people could find general information about the election, as Hasen describes in his upcoming book, Cheap Speech. Notice that Twitter has taken More aggressive stance.

Yesterday’s decision came formally from Facebook’s appointed panel of speech experts which the company calls its oversight board. The board has it No actual power To organize the company, but it might have some influence on Facebook executives. In their statement, Board members criticized Facebook for imposing an indefinite suspension on Trump and said that in the next six months he must choose between a permanent ban and a time-limited one: “When applying an ambiguous and non-standard punishment and then referring this issue to the board of directors, Facebook decided to avoid its responsibilities.”

The board also suggested that Facebook should do more to differentiate posts from ordinary people with small followings and posts from political leaders and others with high influence (like my colleague Shira Ovid) pointing to In her recent newsletter). Council wrote:

… context is important when assessing issues of causation and potential imminent harm. What matters is the degree of influence the user has on other users. When influencer user posts pose a high probability of imminent harm, according to an assessment of international human rights standards, Facebook should take action to enforce its rules quickly.

This section highlights the crux of the issue. It’s clear that Facebook has decided that undermining the credibility of democratic elections does not violate international human rights standards. If you maintain that stance, Trump may be back on Facebook six months from now.

For more:

  • What is Facebook’s censorship board? Cecilia Kang wrote ExplainingBen Smith wrote pole.

  • Board message to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg: “This is your problem” Writes Kevin Rose.

  • Nick Clegg, Britain’s former deputy prime minister, leads the company’s response. Read a glimpse of it.

  • How the comment was important: Michael Cruz traveled from Politico to Ohio recently and it shocked him How many Republican voters know so little On Trump’s recent comments.

  • Biden administration Supported assignment of patents Covid vaccines to boost supply in low-income countries.

  • Support from the White House is no guarantee that the waiver will be adopted. It needs support from all members of the World Trade Organization.

  • European Union She considers whether to be followed The Biden administration decision.

  • Proponents view this move as a moral imperative that will take a hit To India and other countries.

  • Pharmaceutical companies responded angrily, saying this would hinder future vaccine development and do little to increase short-term supplies.

  • Procrastination does not prevent incremental change – the rift between the 50 Democrats in the Senate, the National Review’s argues Jim Geraghty And political scientists Francis Lee and James Carey In the Atlantic Ocean.

  • Biden’s economic plans address one of the blatant New Deal omissions: Women, Benjamin Abelbaum He writes for the Times.

Lost and found: His ship disappeared 176 years ago. His grandchildren’s DNA gave an idea.

Times Classic: What happened to Bob Ross’ drawings? We found them.

Live live: Tamara Press was the dominating Soviet shot putter and discus thrower in the 1960s. But amid questions about her fitness, she withdrew from a major event that required a sex test. She died at the age of 83.

Over the past four months, a regular cast of celebrities has hosted “Jeopardy!” Some seem to fit them naturally as Alex Trebek’s successor, Amanda Hess writes for The Times: “The former danger!” World champion Ken Jennings filled the displays with a Trebek-like wit, while the Packers’ midfielder, Aaron Rodgers, brought the seriousness of the outside party. Others, like Dr. Mohamed Oz, worked less well, trying to beat the show with stories and jokes.

Fans also step in: Seam Invitation to LeVar Burton, former “Reading Rainbow” star, to be the next host has received over 250,000 signatures – and helped him secure a guest spot starting July 26.

One strategic wrinkle: Contestants seem to struggle to adapt to the differences in their hosts’ speaking styles and are not entirely sure when is a good time to participate. Notes Claire McNair in The Ringer. This created randomness that prevented any long winning streak.

Regardless of who gets the permanent job, Hess argues that the clues, “meticulously written and lightly handled”, are the real lottery of the show.

Words from Spelling Bee yesterday were reproachAnd the CurseAnd the Dominant, dominantAnd the dominanceAnd the Intimidation And the Non-dominant. That’s the mystery of the day – or you can Play online.

Here Mini crossword puzzles today, And Guide: Vuitton Fashion (five letters).

If you’re in the mood to play a bit more, look back All of our games are here.

Thanks for spending part of your morning with the Times. see you tomorrow. – David

PS Tuesday night episode of “Jeopardy!” Discerning and The answer to the Times. (Scroll down for the solution.)

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