Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg reportedly dodged a question about bias against conservative groups on the social media site during the company’s Monday shareholders meeting.
“What affirmative steps are in place to increase transparency regarding Facebook’s news section and its removal of pages and posts and what do you have to say to the conservative individuals and groups who have been harmed – and continue to be harmed – by the company’s bias actions?” National Center Free Enterprise Project Director Justin Danhof, asked Zuckerberg during the meeting.
The question stems from a May 9th report from Gizmodo, where, former Facebook workers confirmed suspicions the company was biased against conservative groups, telling Gizmodo the company “routinely suppresses conservative news.”
Zuckerberg listened to the question, sat mute and then deferred to another company executive, according to Danhof. The other company executive reportedly stated that “Facebook’s own internal investigation had exonerated the company, saying that there is no bias against conservatives on the company’s platforms.”
The same executive admitted that Facebook is making changes to its trending news platforms, but Danhof asked why changes had to be made if nothing was wrong.
“The company’s [Facebook] continued denial that it has ever been biased against conservatives flies in the face of reality,” according to Danhof’s press release. “Despite the company’s protestations, it is quite clear that it continues to mistreat conservative groups and individuals.”
Facebook leaders hosted a meeting with a select group of conservative leaders and commentators May 18. Zuckerberg explained the meeting was held so he could “hear their [conservative groups’] concerns personally and have an open conversation about how we can build trust.”