Mark Zuckerberg Defends Facebook Against President's "Anti-Trump" Claims
"Every day I work to bring people together and build a community for everyone."
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday took to his own social media platform to address President Donald Trump's recent tweet calling Facebook "anti-Trump."
"I want to respond to President Trump's tweet this morning claiming Facebook has always been against him," the social media mogul wrote in a lengthy post to his personal Facebook page on Wednesday afternoon. "Every day I work to bring people together and build a community for everyone. We hope to give all people a voice and create a platform for all ideas. Trump says Facebook is against him. Liberals say we helped Trump. Both sides are upset about ideas and content they don't like. That's what running a platform for all ideas looks like."
Zuckerberg went on address a number of factors regarding Facebook's role in the 2016 election. Among the points laid out by Zuckerberg were claims of "billions of interactions discussing the issues that may have never happened offline" and that this was "the first US election where the internet was a primary way candidates communicated."
Candidates in the election did utilize Facebook to reach voters, which Zuckerberg said gave them the ability to "communicate directly with tens of millions of followers every day." He also noted the "hundreds of millions" of dollars spent by advertising campaigns for candidates.
Zuckerberg also credited Facebook with helping voters get registered. "We ran 'get out the vote' efforts that helped as many as 2 million people register to vote," he wrote. "To put that in perspective, that's bigger than the get out the vote efforts of the Trump and Clinton campaigns put together. That's a big deal."
Citing comments he made shortly after the election, in which Zuckerberg addressed the idea of "misinformation on Facebook" affecting the outcome of the presidential election as a "crazy idea," the creator of the social media giant was remorseful. "Calling that crazy was dismissive and I regret it," Zuckerberg wrote. "This is too important an issue to be dismissive. But the data we have has always shown that our broader impact — from giving people a voice to enabling candidates to communicate directly to helping millions of people vote — played a far bigger role in this election."
Zuckerberg vowed to continue his efforts to "build a community for all people" on Facebook, writing, "We will do our part to defend against nation states attempting to spread misinformation and subvert elections. We'll keep working to ensure the integrity of free and fair elections around the world, and to ensure our community is a platform for all ideas and force for good in democracy."