Media critics called the premise of a meeting between Facebook and the Republican Party into question on Friday, as executives from the tech giant arrived in Washington, D.C. to discuss alleged censorship of conservative voices with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and other party officials.
The discussion centered on pushing a claim that Media Matters has called “false and harmful” and which the group said Friday has been categorically debunked: that conservatives are being targeted for censorship by Facebook and other social media platforms.
The meeting was also attended by Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel and Brad Parscale, who has already been named as the manager of President Donald Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign.
Pointing to research by NewsWhip and Nieman Lab, Media Matters noted that “no systematic targeting of conservatives on Facebook” has been detected, and that “users across the political spectrum have seen their Facebook page views decline since the platform rolled out algorithm changes in January.”
Media Matters president Angelo Carusone summed up why Americans should be concerned about Facebook’s insistence on indulging conservatives in their false claims of unfair treatment by the company.
The meeting follows the formation of a partnership between Facebook and former Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) as well as the conservative Heritage Foundation, aimed specifically at rooting out any liberal biases at the company.
As ThinkProgress reported last month, while both left-wing and right-wing groups have seen their traffic from the social media platform plummet, “Facebook’s bias study, according to Facebook, will not include any liberals…Facebook did not answer questions from ThinkProgress about why liberals were excluded from the process or whether this incentivizes conservatives to continue to make false charges of bias.”
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