Facebook Wants ‘Clear Rules for the Internet’ as It Reduces Political Content on Platform

Facebook co-founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg arrives to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill April 11, 2018 in Washington, DC. This is the second day of testimony before Congress by Zuckerberg, 33, after it was reported that 87 …
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently stated that the social media giant would be reducing the amount of political content on its platforms and in its news feeds to channel users towards more “healthy communities.” Zuckerberg also said that he wants “clear guidance and clear rules for the Internet,” and is in favor of updating Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA).

Deadline reports that during a recent call to discuss quarterly earnings, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated that the social media giant is taking steps to reduce the amount of political content on its platforms and in its news feeds in an attempt to channel its users towards more “healthy communities.”

Zuckerberg stated during the call: “What we are hearing is that people don’t want politics and fighting to take over their experience on our service. We are still working through the best way to do this… We will still let people engage in political groups and discussion if they want to.”

Zuckerberg stated that only a small minority of content on Facebook is political and that the vast majority of users would rather it continue to stay that way. Zuckerberg said: “There has been this frenzy across society where a lot of things have become political and politics have been creeping into everything. And we have seen that people don’t want that. They come to connect with friends and family… We can potentially do a better job…”

The company posted strong 2020 fourth-quarter numbers but noted that an antitrust lawsuit from the FTC and most states and a possible repeal of Section 230 could pose a threat in the future. Section 230 grants the internet broad legal immunity and freedom to moderate content, many have called for a repeal of Section 230. In November of 2020, former President Donald Trump called for the repeal of Section 230 stating: “For purposes of National Security, Section 230 must be immediately terminated!!!”

Zuckerberg declined to comment on the FTC but stated: “On regulation overall, the point that I would to highlight is that it would be very helpful to us and the Internet sector for there to be clearer rules and expectations around some of these social issues, around how content should be handled, elections should be handled, what privacy norms the government wants to see in place. Because these questions all have tradeoffs.”

Zuckerberg added that free expression, safety privacy, and social equity “are all very important and it is hard for a private company to balance those. It would be better to have clear guidance and clear rules for the Internet. So that is something that I am going to continue to advocate for.”

Zuckerberg added that he does believe that Section 230, which is more than two decades old, needs to be updated “to make sure it’s working the way people intended.”

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address lucasnolan@protonmail.com


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