Confirming grave fears among progressives that Facebook's efforts to become an arbiter of "trustworthy" news would prioritize corporate and right-wing outlets over independent sources, the social media giant on Wednesday unveiled the first slate of news segments it will air in the coming days as part of its effort to combat "misinformation"—and the schedule is chock-full of Fox News.
Facebook Watch, part of the social media giant's effort to crack down on "fake news" and bring users "high quality content," is about 50% shows from Fox News pic.twitter.com/k2n6Hj9Xnw
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) July 11, 2018
"The network leads off coverage first thing in the morning, snagged the prime mid-day spot with a version of 'Fox News Update'... and will get two weekend time slots," notes Gizmodo's AJ Dellinger. "It's the only news network that is a part of the Facebook-funded project to have a show on Facebook Watch every day of the week."
Dellinger goes on to argue that Facebook's decision to include a heavy dose of Fox News in its Facebook Watch project is part of the platform's effort to "placate its critics on the right," who insist that the tech behemoth is somehow biased against conservative news sources.
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As Common Dreams reported, Facebook executives met with Republican lawmakers last month to discuss the claim that it is censoring conservative viewpoints and favoring left-wing perspectives—an assertion media analysts have dismissed as "ridiculous" and "provably false."
"Zuckerberg has seemed sensitive to claims of left-wing bias over the past year, partnering with a right-wing outlet to fact-check stories, pandering to conservative conspiracy theories, and hiring two major conservative groups to determine whether the platform displays a liberal bias," summarizes Frank Dale of ThinkProgress.
Facebook does not appear to be concerned by the fact that the Fox News network often operates as a personal megaphone for President Donald Trump, casually floats deranged conspiracy theories, reliably carries water for the White House's horrific policies, and lies constantly.