The relatively new realm of social media still has a number of kinks to work out as it pertains to political chicanery, with Facebook leading the way when it comes to the meddling and malfeasance.
The social network itself has made no attempt to hide its ultraliberal bias in recent years. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has admitted to employing a number of engineers solely for the purpose of seeking out and destroying trending conservative articles on the site’s “Trending Topics” feed, specifically for the purpose of promoting his own leftist ideals in their place. Given the massive scope of the site, many users are incensed that their own free speech rights are being impinged by the network through the use of these censorship tactics.
Now, Facebook has moved onto algorithmic means to do their liberal bidding, but that hasn’t addressed the real issue of censorship and pseudo-fascism within the massive publication.
In Seattle, however, a new concern has emerged in the political hackery of Zuckerberg and company, with the media giant staring down the barrel of massive fines for their unwillingness to provide legally required information regarding their dissemination of political advertising.
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“Facebook must disclose details about spending in last year’s Seattle city elections or face penalties, Wayne Barnett, executive director of the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission, said in a statement.
“The penalties could be up to $5,000 per advertising buy, Barnett said, adding that he would discuss next steps this week with Seattle’s city attorney.
“The unregulated nature of U.S. online political ads drew attention last year after Facebook said Russian agents using fake names bought ads on the social network to try to sway voters ahead of the 2016 presidential election. Moscow denies trying to meddle in the election.“Buying online election ads requires little more than a credit card. Federal law does not currently force online ad sellers such as Facebook or Alphabet Inc’s Google and YouTube to disclose the identity of the buyers.
“Legislation is pending to extend federal rules governing political advertising on television and radio to also cover internet ads, and tech firms have announced plans to voluntarily disclose some data.
“Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said in September that his company would ‘create a new standard for transparency in online political ads.'”
Of course, as with most things Zuckerberg, that empty promise was thoroughly ignored by the hoodie-clad “regular guy” character that the political hopeful is currently playing the role of.
There is no question that Facebook is attempting to recreate the real world in their online sphere, albeit in the image of Zuckerberg’s personal beliefs. As the platform grows to be a larger and larger part of the national narrative, new rules and regulations protecting the First Amendment from men such as Mark Zuckerberg must be enacted, lest we desire for a corruptible and overtly fascist media empire to grow beneath our feet.