Facebook political bias? Glenn Beck says he’s seen no evidence of it

facebook housing catalyst front sign headquarters hq offices home fb
Prominent conservative pundit Glenn Beck has written about Wednesday’s meeting with senior figures at Facebook, including CEO Mark Zuckerberg, to discuss recent allegations that the social networking giant has been suppressing conservative news stories in its Trending Topics feature.

More than a dozen leading conservative media figures spent time discussing the issue at Facebook’s Menlo Park HQ in Silicon Valley, and while Beck described a certain amount of hostility in the room toward the company, he himself was satisfied there’s been no concerted effort to suppress conservative content.

In a post on his website, Beck, who has more than three million followers on Facebook, said he’d found “no evidence of a top-down initiative to silence conservative voices … walking out of the meeting, I was convinced that Facebook is behaving appropriately and trying to do the right thing.”

He said he was “really impressed” with Zuckerberg’s manner during the meeting, describing him as thoughtful and direct. According to Beck, Zuckerberg admitted Trending Topics, which launched two years ago, is “far from perfect,” though he promised the company is working to make improvements.

In a surprise turn, Beck lambasted some of his fellow conservatives at the meeting for being too ardent in their demands, among them calls for diversity initiatives and a “six-month training program to help their biased and liberal workforce understand and respect conservative opinions and values.”

He said it was like “affirmative action for conservatives,” adding, “When did conservatives start demanding quotas AND diversity training AND less people from Ivy League Colleges. I sat there, looking around the room at ‘our side’ wondering, ‘Who are we?'”

“The overall tenor, to me, felt like the Salem Witch Trial: ‘Facebook, you must admit that you are screwing us, because if not, it proves you are screwing us,'” he wrote.

For Beck, even getting an invitation from Facebook was “staggering,” and it seems that until he sees any concrete evidence suggesting otherwise, he’s happy about how the company is going about its business.

As for Zuckerberg, he’s strongly refuted allegations of improper conduct regarding Facebook’s Trending Topics section. “We have rigorous guidelines that do not permit the prioritization of one viewpoint over another or the suppression of political perspectives,” the CEO insisted last week. Beck, for one, seems convinced.

The controversy blew up last week after Gizmodo reported accusations made by someone who until recently worked on Trending Topics.

Want to find out more? Check out DT’s in-depth analysis here.

Product Review

Gate’s Smart Lock is locked and loaded but ultimately lacks important basics

In a world of video cameras and doorbells comes the Gate Smart Lock, a lock with a video camera embedded. It’s a great idea, but lacks some crucial functionality to make it a top-notch product.
Movies & TV

Study up for season 8 with the best Game of Thrones theories

Season 8 of Game of Thrones is still on the horizon, meaning there's still time to brush up on the best theories about the show. Whether you're one of the last adherents of the Cleganebowl or a King Aerys truther, here are our top theories.
Product Review

Motorola's sexy Moto G7 will change the way you look at budget phones

With glass curves, a large display, and an eye-catching price tag the Moto G7 will turn plenty of heads in the budget smartphone market. We tested it out to see if Motorola has done enough to top the value charts.

These cheap laptops will make you wonder why anyone spends more

Looking for a budget notebook for school, work, or play? The best budget laptops, including our top pick -- the Asus ZenBook UX331UA -- will get the job done without digging too deeply into your pockets.
Social Media

Twitter wants you to help shape the future design of its app

Twitter is launching an app for testing new design features and it wants you to get involved. Those accepted into the program will have the chance to try out different conversation designs aimed at improving the user experience.
Emerging Tech

Professional drone racing is flying onto Twitter this summer

Professional drone racing is coming to Twitter for the first time this summer. Organizers hope the streaming deal with the social media platform will help the growing sport to further broaden its audience.
Social Media

Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter is giving the "what's happening" treatment to photos and video by allowing users to access the in-app camera fast enough to catch and share the moment. The new Twitter camera is now accessible with a swipe.

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Social Media

Yep, it’s not just you. Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down for many

Facebook's family of apps has been suffering issues for much of the day. Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook itself have been out of action for users around the world, with the company scrambling to sort it out.
Social Media

Facebook may soon let you watch live TV with friends in Watch Party

Facebook Watch Party is designed to allow friends to watch together, even when they can't be in the same physical space. Now, that feature could be expanding to include live TV. Facebook announced a test of the feature, starting with live…
Social Media

Federal investigation digs into Facebook’s data-sharing deals

Facebook confirmed it is cooperating with a federal criminal investigation. According to a report, the company is under investigation for sharing user data with smartphone and tablet companies.
Social Media

Facebook explains its worst outage as 3 million users head to Telegram

Facebook, if you didn't already know it, suffered a bit of an issue on Wednesday, March 13. An issue that took down not only its social networking site, but also Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger. On Thursday it offered an explanation.

Snapchat could soon let you play games in between your selfies

If a new report is accurate, Snapchat will be getting an integrated gaming platform in April. The platform will feature mobile games form third-party developers, and one publisher is already signed on.
Social Media

Twitter is testing a handy subscription feature for following threads

Twitter has recently started testing a feature that lets you subscribe to a thread so that you’ll no longer need to like a comment or post to it yourself in order to receive notifications of new contributions.