Liberal billionaire George Soros insists that Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg — the company’s CEO and COO, respectively — be “removed from control” over his allegations that the social media platform is helping President Donald Trump win his 2020 re-election bid.
What are the details?
In an open letter published Sunday in the Financial Times, Soros said Facebook should refuse to publish political ads on its platform and accused the company of having a “mutual assistance agreement” with Trump.
He also insisted that Facebook’s refusal to remove political ads served only to help re-elect the president.
“Mr. Zuckerberg appears to be engaged in some kind of mutual assistance arrangement with Donald Trump that will help him to get re-elected,” he wrote.
“I repeat my proposal,” he continued. “Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg should be removed from control of Facebook.”
“If there is any doubt whether an ad is political, it should err on the side of caution and refuse to publish,” Soros’ editorial added. “It is unlikely that Facebook will follow this course.”
Last week, Zuckerberg wrote an editorial for the outlet insisting that he was committed to regulating political ads on the platform and said that it would go into effect when the U.S. government set forth applicable regulations to follow.
“Facebook does not need to wait for government regulations to stop accepting any political advertising in 2020 until after the elections on 4 November,” Soros’ letter insisted.
Has Facebook responded?
A spokesperson for the tech giant told USA Today that it will not comply with Soros’ demands to deviate from its norm, saying that the notion it would be linked to a governmental organization or particular agenda “runs counter to our values and the facts.”
Facebook recently issued a white paper on content regulation, discussing possible guidelines for governmental online regulation.
Four challenges the memo identified include “How can content regulation reduce harmful speech while preserving free expression?”, “How should regulation enhance the accountability of internet platforms?”, “Should regulation require internet firms to meet certain performance targets?”, and “Should regulation define which harmful content should be prohibited on internet platforms?”
Author: Sarah Taylor