Tags: Facebook | Conservative News | Trending

Ex-Facebook Workers: Facebook Blacklisted Newsmax, Other Leading Conservative News Websites

Ex-Facebook Workers: Facebook Blacklisted Newsmax, Other Leading Conservative News Websites
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By    |   Monday, 09 May 2016 11:56 AM

Facebook workers routinely blacklisted stories from leading conservative websites like Newsmax and Breitbart from the social network’s "trending" news section, Gizmodo reports.

Citing an unnamed former journalist who worked on the project, Gizmodo reports news stories about the Conservative Political Action Conference, 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul, and other conservative topics were blocked – even if they were trending with Facebook users.

"Depending on who was on shift, things would be blacklisted or trending," the source tells the outlet.

"I’d come on shift and I’d discover that CPAC or Mitt Romney or Glenn Beck or popular conservative topics wouldn’t be trending because either the [news curator] didn’t recognize the news topic or it was like they had a bias against [Texas Sen.] Ted Cruz."

Among the blacklisted or suppressed topics were: former IRS official Lois Lerner, who came under fire for allegedly scrutinizing conservative groups; Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker; the Drudge Report; Chris Kyle, the former Navy SEAL murdered in 2013; and former Fox News contributor Steven Crowder, Gizmodo reports, citing a log provided by its unnamed source.

"I believe it had a chilling effect on conservative news," the former Facebook worker tells Gizmodo.

Another former worker tells Gizmodo the operation had an aversion to conservative news sources.

"It was absolutely bias," the second unnamed ex-Facebook curator tells Gizmodo. "We were doing it subjectively. It just depends on who the curator is and what time of day it is. Every once in awhile a Red State or conservative news source would have a story. But we would have to go and find the same story from a more neutral outlet that wasn’t as biased."

Stories covered by conservative outlets like Breitbart, the Washington Examiner, and Newsmax that were trending enough to be picked up by Facebook’s algorithm were excluded unless mainstream sites like the New York Times, the BBC or CNN covered the same thing, Gizmodo reports.

The editorial spin is contrast to the company's claim that the module simply tracks
"topics that have recently become popular on Facebook."

Gizmodo said it did not receive an answer to its requests for comment from Facebook.

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Facebook workers routinely blacklisted stories from leading conservative websites like Newsmax and Breitbart from the social network's trending news section, Gizmodo reports. Citing an unnamed former journalist who worked on the project, Gizmodo reports news stories...
Facebook, Conservative News, Trending
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2016-56-09
Monday, 09 May 2016 11:56 AM
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