CNN’s Anderson Cooper blasted a Facebook executive in an interview over the social media platform’s decision to leave up an unflattering video of House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi that showed her slurring her words.
Cooper contended that Facebook had to take responsibility for spreading false information since it is in the news business and has a higher standard to the truth.
Facebook’s head of global policy management, Monika Bickert told Cooper on Friday the platform’s reasoning and defended the decision. The video has been seen more than two million times.
“Facebook has repeatedly told Congress and the American people that you’re serious about fighting disinformation and fake news, yet this doctored video that I think your own fact-checkers acknowledge is doctored of Speaker Pelosi remains on your platform,” Cooper asked. “Why?”
“Anybody who is seeing this video in news feed, anyone who is going to share it to somebody else, anybody who has shared it in the past, they are being alerted that this video is false,” Bickert said. “We work with internationally certified fact-checking organizations that are independent from Facebook, and we think these are the right organizations to be making decisions about whether something is true or false. As soon as we get a rating from them that content is false, then we dramatically reduce the distribution of that content.”
Cooper also asked Bickert whether Facebook had entered the “news business” and insisted that sharing information constituted entry into that game. He also said “this is false information you’re spreading.”
“We aren’t in the news business,” Bickert said. “We’re in the social media business.”
Facebook said it didn’t remove the video because it believes in free expression. Twitter has also left the video up on its service, but YouTube has removed it.