Flashback: Remember When Zuckerberg Said Facebook Was for Free Expression?

October 16th, 2020 5:05 PM

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg gave a noble speech in favor of free expression at Georgetown University one year ago. A few boycotts and media outrages later, and now he has gone so far as letting his platform censor the president of the United States.

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivered an inspiring speech titled, “Standing for Voice and Free Expression.” Zuckerberg said that he wanted Facebook to “continue to stand for free expression.” He addressed critics from the left by arguing that “We’re at another cross-roads” over whether “We can continue to stand for free expression, understanding its messiness,” or “decide the cost is simply too great.”

He also made a statement some would find laughably ironic today:

“I know many people disagree, but, in general, I don’t think it’s right for a private company to censor politicians or the news in a democracy.”

A boycott and several hundred angry lobbyist groups later, Zuckerberg has chosen the opposite path. His platform has not only clamped down on free speech, but it has continued to allow far-left extremist groups to tun rampant on the platform while censoring pro-Trump voices.

As Facebook has expanded its own censorship policies to crack down on conspiracy theorists even if they are nonviolent, it has allowed far-left groups to openly call for violence or to dox and harass a sitting senator at his purported home.

Facebook has also declared that it will censor ads that voice concerns about voter fraud and the integrity of the 2020 presidential election. Facebook director of product management Rob Leathern described Facebook’s policy updates in a Twitter thread: “Last week we said we’d prohibit ads that make premature declarations of victory. We also won’t allow ads with content that seeks to delegitimize the outcome of an election.” It may not be a coincidence that this happened the same week that the Biden campaign demanded Trump’s Facebook posts be censored.

Facebook has also reportedly removed multiple ads from the Trump campaign that the platform claimed were “misleading,” according to The Washington Post.

The ads in question allegedly “claimed without evidence that accepting refugees from abroad would increase risks related to the coronavirus pandemic,” NBC News explained. Despite this, Zuckerberg has had the gall to still call himself a “big believer in free expression.”

Most recently After The Washington Post’s opinion columnist Greg Sargent called the recent Hunter Biden scandal “[f]latly false,” Facebook’s Policy Communications Director Andy Stone announced on Twitter that Facebook would be “reducing its distribution on our platform.”

Facebook also censored an article with the damning claim from a “top virologist and whistleblower” that “the Chinese government intentionally manufactured and released the COVID-19 virus that led to mass shutdowns and deaths across the world.”

As can be seen from the examples above, Facebook gave in to far-left pressure, both inside and outside. Facebook had come under fire from the far-left for both allowing political campaign ads unvetted by liberal fact-checkers and for allowing Breitbart to be among its sources for its human-curated “News” tab. Recently it even cracked down on far-left black NFAC groups. 

And though Facebook has stopped some groups from organizing, though it must be stated that this is nowhere near enough. It’s Going Down and CrimethInc, both of whom are associated with radical-left community organizing released a joint statement after Facebook removed them from the platform. This comes after Facebook revealed its new “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations” policy to crack down on groups the platform said are “tied to violence.” 

Conservatives are under attack. Contact Facebook headquarters at 1-650-308-7300 and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.