Hillary Clinton Blasts Zuckerberg, Says He Should “Pay the Price”

Mark Zuckerberg’s decision to allow political ads to circulate on Facebook regardless of whether they’re true or not has been causing controversy.

Hillary Clinton, who won the popular vote in 2016 but lost the Electoral College, recently spoke out against Zuckerberg’s actions, saying he should “pay the price” for what he’s done to democracy.

Mark Zuckerberg blasted by Hillary Clinton
Mandel Ngan AFP Getty Images via the Guardian

Wait, Zuckerberg Allows Fake News on Facebook?

Bafflingly, Zuckerberg does, in fact, allow fake news to circulate on Facebook, but only under specific conditions. Most articles shared to the site as promoted ads are fact-checked, allowing users to see whether they are parodies, legitimate or of dubious origins.

However, political ads aren’t subject to this kind of scrutiny.

What did Hillary Clinton Have to Say about Mark Zuckerberg?

Clinton, speaking at a New York showing of The Great Hack, a Netflix documentary about Facebook’s infamous Cambridge Analytica scandal, unleashed some harsh criticism of the social media platform.

“When Facebook is the principal news source for more than half of the American people, and the only source of news that most of them pay any attention to, and if it announces that it has no responsibility for the airing of false ads … how are you supposed to get accurate information about anything, let alone candidates running for office?”

The “War on Truth” Continues

Clinton pointed to the similarities between Trump’s campaign and the results of the Brexit referendum. Much of the same thing can be said about the two events: both were “populist” in their origins, though they were funded by shadowy money from the ultra-wealthy. Both were propped up by misinformation campaigns on social media. Both were incredibly divisive in their respective countries, driving a wedge between the political left and right.

Clinton argued that these instances represented a “war on truth” being orchestrated through social media. To Clinton, these both represent the reality of the situation is that “incredibly wealthy people who believe they can do whatever they want to do” are in control of the flow of information.

The Great Hack, for its part, shows how the Cambridge Analytica firm used illegally harvested data to provide Russian disinformation campaigns with the tools they needed to influence the 2016 presidential election. Zuckerberg has yet to see any serious repercussions for his platform’s role in this dark chapter of American history.