“We share the concerns of companies who are speaking up about Facebook’s inaction around making meaningful changes that protects our democracy,” Biden spokesman Bill Russo said in a statement. “But with less than five months until Election Day, we cannot afford to cede these platforms to Donald Trump and his lies. Our campaign will be present every day to get our message in front of every voter to ensure Trump doesn’t get another four years.”
Since launching his run for president in April 2019, the Biden campaign has spent $26.7 million on advertising on the social media platform, with $22.3 million of that spending coming since just before the South Carolina primary. Since the general election began, about half of the Biden campaign’s total ad budget has gone to Facebook, per CMAG data.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg agreed to meet with civil rights groups amid the widening advertiser boycott of the social media platform, the company told CNN Wednesday.
The groups have called for Facebook to take nearly a dozen steps to combat hate speech and misinformation, including recommending giving victims of harassment the ability to speak to a Facebook representative and making changes to Facebook’s policies.
This week, in another letter the Biden campaign sent to Facebook, campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon once again expressed alarm over how seriously the company is taking the matter of the spread of disinformation on its site and beseeched Facebook to prevent the use of its platform by Trump to spread “hateful content.”
“With respect to ‘hateful content,” O’Malley Dillon writes, “the question is not whether ‘there is a public interest in allowing a wide range of free expression in people’s posts’ even when that expression includes divisive and inflammatory content, as your announcement suggested.”
Rather, the question, she said, is whether Facebook’s algorithm should continue to amplify the content because it is “divisive and inflammatory.”
“The answer to that question is no, which should be clearer now than ever before,” she writes.
CNN’s David Wright and Brian Fung contributed to this story.
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