Facebook to Biden admin: we have pro-vaccine information on Facebook too

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On Friday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki called out Facebook for spreading vaccine misinformation. She said that it was instrumental in helping spread false information about vaccines, particularly that vaccines cause infertility. She also said that the misinformation is perpetuated by known accounts that Facebook refuses to ban. She said “There’s about 12 people who are producing 65 percent of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms. All of them remain active on Facebook, despite some even being banned on other platforms, including ones that Facebook owns.” President Biden was asked about Facebook after that and he made his stance clear that Facebook is killing people. As a result Facebook has issued a defensive statement saying they’re not killing anyone and that Biden is wrong, essentially. Here’s more from Deadline, including Facebook’s response. Deadline also has more on the statistic about the accounts which Psaki mentioned, which was based on a report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate.

President Joe Biden lashed out at social media platforms as the conduits for the spread of misinformation about the Covid-19 vaccines, reflecting the concern that the White House has over the spread of the Delta variant among the unvaccinated.

As Biden left for Camp David on Friday, NBC News’ Peter Alexander asked Biden, “On the topic of disinformation, what’s your message to platforms like Facebook?”

“They’re killing people,” Biden said. “Look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated, and they’re killing people.”

Facebook has defended its actions to root out disinformation on their platform, but the White House has called for the company to take greater steps.

In response to Biden’s comment, Facebook spokesperson Dani Lever said in a statement, “We will not be distracted by accusations which aren’t supported by the facts. The fact is that more than 2 billion people have viewed authoritative information about COVID-19 and vaccines on Facebook, which is more than any other place on the internet. More than 3.3 million Americans have also used our vaccine finder tool to find out where and how to get a vaccine. The facts show that Facebook is helping save lives. Period.”

[From Deadline]

Facebook’s incredibly defensive response does not surprise me. They could have started this by saying that they’re working with the administration to make sure that the information on their platform is true and valid. Or at least that they work on this issue internally. Instead they’re saying that they do have some accurate vaccine data too, so it cancels out the misinformation, right? At least that’s what I’m reading into it. The right wing a-holes are having a field day with the Biden administration calling out Facebook finally. They’re whining about free speech and censorship, because that’s what they always do. Those people are a huge component of Facebook’s base and Facebook is pandering to them.

Since that dismissive statement, Facebook has published a blog post detailing their efforts to increase vaccine acceptance and remove misinformation. It’s titled “Moving Past The Finger Pointing” and takes a “who, us?” approach claiming that the Biden administration is blaming “a handful of American social media companies.” You can read that here.

Mark Zuckerberg has testified in front of Congress three times. He did his “aw shucks” act, wasted time answering dumb questions from clueless Congresspeople and did absolutely nothing. That was the outcome last year when he talked to leaders from the Black community as well. Zuckerberg has has had both public and private meetings with Trump. Facebook is a cesspool of misinformation, conspiracy theories and racism. It has radicalized and indoctrinated terrorists. It needs to be heavily regulated and I hope that this administration is going to make that happen.

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46 Responses to “Facebook to Biden admin: we have pro-vaccine information on Facebook too”

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  1. Nomegusta says:

    Facebook is absolutely one of the most harmful things to happen to society in recent years and will cement it’s place as one of the most harmful things to happen this century in no time at all.

  2. Merricat says:

    In my kindest of moods, Zuckerberg can go straight to hell.

  3. Snuffles says:

    I REALLY want to shut my Facebook account but for some friends and family, it’s the only way I keep up with them. The only other accounts I follow are cute animal stuff. There was a time when I followed more but it was destroying my mental health.

    • smcollins says:

      I’m right there with you. If I deleted my account I’d lose contact with my entire extended family (we’re pretty scattered around different states so FB is our main tool of staying connected). I’m not on Twitter or Instagram or any other format, and I tend to steer clear of the more toxic pages on FB. I admit that I’ll occasionally dip into comment sections just to see what insane things people are spewing but I never engage with those people.

      • John says:

        Dump Facebook anyway. Pick up the phone. Create a family text chain. There are options for communication that don’t involve undermining American democracy.

    • Frida_K says:

      Exactly the same here, @Snuffles. Plus, I have a business page.

      That said, there is a reason why my nickname for him is Fvckerberg. Many reasons, in fact.

    • John says:

      Write a letter. Democracy is at stake. Dump Facebook and say why.

    • molly says:

      Just do it! I quit facebook the summer of 2016 when the election was heating up, and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done. I miss out on some nosey deep dives I’d otherwise do, but I’ve never doubted it’s the correct decision for my happiness and relationships.

      • MipMip says:

        I had the same concerns about losing touch when I deleted Facebook last year. Turns out, it didn’t matter. You text and email the people you want in your life and the rest fall away. My mental health is sooo much better for it. Do it for democracy.

      • insertpunhere says:

        I quit about six months ago, and I rarely regret it. I occasionally miss out on pictures of my nieces, but I also see them regularly, so it’s not the end of the world. And, I’m firmly convinced that Zuckerberg is a sociopath, so I’m not going to contribute to him hurting people if I can help it.

    • AmB says:

      Yeah, but your phone has a “dial” function, right?

  4. Darla says:

    I don’t wanna move past the finger pointing…finger pointing gets a bad wrap.

  5. faithmobile says:

    Facebook needs to held to account in a serious way but so does an education system that doesn’t encourage the critical thinking skills to challenge blatant misinformation.

    • Southern Fried says:

      Many public schools address sorting fact from fiction seriously starting in 6th grade, critical thinking starts early than that. Facebook is the absolute worst. You couldn’t pay me to join. I find other social media much easier to curate so enjoy them immensely. I have a smart loving liberal sister who comes up with some of the dumbest garbage from Facebook. We can’t talk about it, she’s addicted.

    • GraceB says:

      I agree completely that the education system also needs to be looked at and I hate social media for the way they spread misinformation, as well as racism, prejudice and general hatred but I think one of the difficulties here is ascertaining the facts sometimes. There are times when the facts are very clear cut and a simple Google search is all that’s needed but other times when people need to be able to voice differing opinions and question the facts we are being presented with.

      Developing critical thinking and an individuals own ability to question what they’re being told might be more of a solution in the long run.

    • Sadezilla says:

      The US is going in the wrong direction on that front too. The “anti-CRT” (I use quotes because we all know they are using CRT as a stand-in for facts they don’t like) and anti-vaccine and public health legislation coming from some states is straight-up dystopian.

  6. Krista says:

    All social media has become toxic (Twitter, Tokyo’s, FB, Instagram) and I’d say a lot of the internet.
    Controversy or controversial opinions drives traffic which amounts to profit for any of these companies . They also encourage this by suggesting these types of posts in things like Instagram. So of course they have no interest in doing anything and catering to either side.
    Add in the fact people can be anonymous or hide behind a screen.

    On Instagram they are so overwhelmed by issues they don’t even have enough time/supports to deal with them when reported.

    It all needs to be heavily regulated and major changes. I agree with @nomegusta in that social media will be known as one of the most harmful… alongside so many other crappy things we have allowed to happen as a society

    I deleted Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and it was the best thing I did.

  7. Sakura says:

    Life was, without a shadow of a doubt, better before social media. Facebook is at the very top of that list.

  8. Kkat says:

    Zuckerberg is full of shit.
    I have reported SO MANY accounts and posts that are antivaxx and spreading misinformation about covid and the vaccine.
    Really ridiculously obvious stuff.
    And EVERY SINGLE ONE comes back with it’s not against their policy.

    • Southern Fried says:

      I moved and joined NextDoor to get local info and what a mistake, it’s a cesspool. I reported and reported false COVID info and racist garbage only to get ignored or lectured by trumper moderators. More than once they’d delete my comments with no explanation.

      • iconoclast59 says:

        NextDoor has been co-opted by Karens and other racist haters. It’s horrible.

      • Moira's Rose's Garden says:

        Same Southern Fried. The only plus about Nextdoor is identifying individuals from which to stay away.

  9. GrnieWnie says:

    I. Do. Not. Understand. Why. Government. Asks. And. Does. Not. Tell.

    REGULATE SOCIAL MEDIA. It’s inevitable. It’s coming. This is a gap in regulation. FILL IT ALREADY. rant rant rant *gnaw gnaw gnaw*

    • Songs (Or it didnt happen) says:

      The government should absolutely NOT regulate social media. Sorry, but that is a horrible idea. Think for a minute about President Trump at the helm of government regulated social media.

      • Truthiness says:

        If vaccine disinformation causes deaths – and it does – FB should be held accountable. I vacated FB because of the paid lies about Hillary and it has only gotten worse since then. The millions accepted from Russian sources should be widely known.

      • Moira's Rose's Garden says:

        Have to disagree because considering that millions get their news from sm sites, the companies are acting as press and should be subject to the same regulations.

      • Amanda says:

        Unregulated social media is what got Trump elected though. There’s no way around it: we have to have standards enforced.

        Facebook is truly a cesspool, and I was horrified to be informed while working for the Democrats in Michigan in the 2020 campaign that most Americans get their news from Facebook — !!!

  10. Southern Fried says:

    I’m not sure why Twitter and IG are so toxic for many. I’m able to carefully curate both accounts for ten years and truly enjoy and learn lots. The range of subjects and people are great additions to my life. As for keeping track of family and friends without Facebook there’s calling and texts or IG.

  11. Moira's Rose's Garden says:

    This is the same dude that bragged about lying to Congress because “he wasn’t sworn in.” And yet somehow Harvard’s …hedge fund directors…er administration felt the need to bestow an honorary law degree on this jackass because somehow being a mediocre white man who stole and monetized an idea that has since wreaked havoc on the world is deserving of a JD.

    And Facebook does delete content, but only when it’s about BLM not white supremacy and vaccine falsehoods.

    AAARRRRGGGGHHH

  12. iconoclast59 says:

    Never forget: Zuck invented Facebook so he and his fellow douchebros could assign ratings to the women at Harvard. He didn’t have good intentions then, he doesn’t have good intentions now.

    Also, Zuckerberg has been in deep with the Russians, right from the start. Google Yuri Milner. Treasonous b@st@rd.

    • Moira's Rose's Garden says:

      Technically he didn’t invent it, he stole it from the trust fund Winklevoss twins and then cast himself as an underdog (not sure how going to Exeter makes you an underdog but ok). And isn’t it ironic that Jared 2.0 has the audacity to rate women? UGH
      You’re right about the Russian connection. There is a book coming out about him where he specifically said Company over Country.

    • Lizzie Bathory says:

      ^^^ Yep. Zuckerberg & others in Silicon Valley learned the hard way that rubles come with strings. In Milner’s case, $200 million was a real bargain for what Russia got in return.

    • Moira's Rose's Garden says:

      This is odd.
      F#ckerzuck looks like Jared.
      Just seeing Milner for the first time and the resemblance between him and wanna be Lex Luther Jeff Bezos is uncanny.
      Maybe we CAN judge a book by it’s cover.

  13. Twin falls says:

    Our love of all things convenient will be our downfall. It keeps us doing things we know are bad for the greater good.

    FB too convenient to give up.
    Amazon too convenient to give up.
    Plastics too convenient to give up.
    Personal use cars too convenient to give up.

  14. Alia says:

    Not only Facebook, YouTube is also a huge platform for misinformation and such. TikTok too but you can’t do anything against TikTok.

  15. Dana says:

    I honestly thought the header photo of Zuck was a bad wax figure of him.

    • gilda says:

      Came to say that too! I was convinced it was from Madam Tussauds so as not to replicate this demon’s actual physical countenance. Chilling.

  16. Valerie says:

    Dude, why does he look so smooth-skinned??

    • Moira's Rose's Garden says:

      It’s thanks to the surgeon that works on Jivanka. Probably get a group discount

  17. Silver says:

    Why don’t people finally take responsibility and do their own research and not rely on Facebook for information? We are talking about grown ass adults here who are so stupid en masse that they believe what’s posted on Facebook

    • Catt Berlin-George says:

      @Silver I am with you on that. People have no curiosity or desire to research news and information on legit sites with fact-checking and documented source reporting. NO, of course not. It is earlier to just skim through horrid fake news and pictures and videos of sensationalized garbage.

  18. EM says:

    @MipMip – that’s what I never even “joined” Facebook and honestly no regrets at least for friends/family. It is a little annoying when some small businesses are FB exclusive – even our local Police Department. Things like government accounts should not be FB only – talk about a monopoly.

  19. Bendy Windy says:

    So…I’m the only person constantly being bombarded with pro-vaccine information on Facebook then? Because it pops up all the damn time and it’s annoying because I’m already vaccinated.