As President Donald Trump lashes out at Twitter for fact-checking two of his tweets and prepares an executive order targeting social media companies, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has weighed in — on Trump’s side.
In an interview with Fox News set to air Thursday, May 28, Zuckerberg said that his social media company has “a different policy than Twitter on this.”
“I just believe strongly that Facebook shouldn’t be the arbiter of truth,” Zuckerberg told The Five co-host Dana Perino. “I think in general private companies — especially these platform companies — shouldn’t be in the position of doing that.”
Trump and many Republicans have criticized Twitter over the fact-check messages on Trump’s tweets about mail-in voting, which alerted users to “get the facts” after Trump made an unsubstantiated claim that mail-in voting would lead to rampant voter fraud. Trump accused Twitter of censoring him and other conservative voices and vowed to take action against social media companies.
“Twitter has now shown that everything we have been saying about them (and their other compatriots) is correct,” Trump tweeted Wednesday morning. “Big action to follow!”
The White House later announced that Trump will sign an executive order on social media companies, which analysts expect will target Section 230
, a piece of legislation that protects social media companies from being liable for the content that users post on their sites. Stripping this immunity would put Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and many other platforms at risk of a deluge of lawsuits from users.
Trump hinted at the executive order again Thursday morning.
“This will be a Big Day for Social Media and FAIRNESS!” he tweeted
“Our intention is to connect the dots of conflicting statements and show the information in dispute so people can judge for themselves,” Dorsey tweeted. More transparency from us is critical so folks can clearly see the why behind our actions.” Dorsey asked critics to focus their attention on him, as conservative commentators had targeted a Twitter executive for years-old tweets that criticized Trump.
“There is someone ultimately accountable for our actions as a company, and that’s me,” Dorsey wrote. “Please leave our employees out of this. We’ll continue to point out incorrect or disputed information about elections globally. And we will admit to and own any mistakes we make.”
Dorsey also pushed back against Zuckerberg’s remarks. “This does not make us an ‘arbiter of truth,'” he said.
For his part, Trump seems to have noticed Zuckerberg’s comments; Trump retweeted a Republican pollster’s post about Zuckerberg’s interview that included the operative’s take on Zuckerberg’s comment: “An obviously true statement.”