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Is Facebook responsible for Russian election interference?

Facebook can't be fully blamed

It's wholly liable for its website

 Getty: Justin Sullivan / Staff

The complicated nature of Facebook and the way information spread through it makes it unfair to wholly blame the company for Russian ads on its site that spread disinformation last year, assert Mike Isaac and Scott Shane of The New York Times. Russian activity on Facebook was disguised by creating groups as ideologically diverse as pro-LGBT to pro-gun. The fake news content that was shared then spread on the internet through real people. Russian propaganda had many faces, making eliminating it hard. Other social media sites were also similarly affected. Blaming Facebook for mishandling a unique situation that had never existed before is unfair.

Keep on reading at the New York Times

Facebook created a tool that was extremely lucrative without considering or preparing for the negative ways it could be used, reports Isaac Chotiner of Slate. Due to the fact that much of it is run by algorithms and not people, the kind of ads that are bought and the kind of information that is spread doesn’t get reviewed the way it should be. While this was profitable, Facebook didn’t care what kind of information was being spread. The company’s willful ignorance and mismanagement of its social media site ended up allowing a foreign nation to spread false information in the United States. Just like it reaps the profits, it must also take the blame.

Keep on reading at Slate
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