Over the past several months, conservative groups – including associated of President Trump – were often not penalised by Facebook for violating its rules because people at the company worried about the perception of anti-conservative bias.
Posts and ad spending along with internal Facebook documents were examined, and it was revealed accounts that included Donald Trump Jr. and a Pro-Trump super PAC were shielded from the platform’s most serious enforcement actions. For instance, Facebook removed a strike against Trump Jr. on Instagram – which is owned by Facebook – that would have led to him being labelled a “repeat offender” and could have meant a permanent ban under platform rules.
Facebook did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
Conservatives have repeatedly complained about what they see as anti-conservative bias on social media, including Facebook. The president has railed against what he sees as “total command and control of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google,” by the “Radical Left”, and last May, the White House launched a now-inactive tool for Americans to “share their stories of suspected political bias” with the president.
But there’s been little evidence that such bias exists. In fact, last month The Wall Street Journal reported that Facebook has designed changes to its news feed algorithm in 2017 to reduce the visibility of left-learning news sites like Mother Jones on its platforms.
According to the Journal, the plan was endorsed by Mark Zuckerberg.