Facebook is once more attempting to be seen as neutral, with a new decision about fact-checking. And the left isn’t happy about it.
The social media giant will no longer fact-check opinion pieces and satire on its platform, according to the Wall Street Journal. This idea was triggered by a fact-checking controversy which led to an opinion piece about climate change from the Washington Examiner to be labeled as “false.” Facebook removed the label after it was contested by the author of the op-ed, CO2.
The new rules have yet to be announced, but the liberal media has already cried out against the decision. New York Times tech reporter Davey Alba wrote, “There are LOTS of pieces of misinformation and disinformation that bad-faith actors can dress up as ‘opinion’ or ‘satire.’” Bloomberg reporter Sarah Frier tweeted, “Wasn't most of the problematic misinformation ahead of the 2016 election from hyper-partisan ‘news’ sites?” Politifact, one of Facebook’s liberal fact-checkers, argued, “There are cases where the line between fact and opinion are not as bright as you might think.”
This news comes after Facebook released new rules saying that the platform would not fact-check politicians.
Websites and outlets that are fact-checked and found “false” on Facebook have to deal with the consequences of having their content outreach limited. Pro-life organization Live Action had a statement from founder Lila Rose fact-checked by two pro-abortion doctors for Facebook fact-checking partner Science Feedback. Lila Rose tweeted that Facebook was going to limit the reach of her page, because her statement, “Abortion is never medically necessary,” was rated as false.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg eventually admitted that there was “bias” in the fact-check of Live Action. The false designation was removed, in an unprecedented move.
Christian satire site The Babylon Bee has been targeted multiple times by Facebook’s fact-checkers. Although Snopes is now no longer a fact-checking partner with Facebook, the site targeted the Bee for a post about a CNN spin-cycle, rating it false, back when it was one of Facebook’s original five fact-checkers.