Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, wants you to know that the privately-owned digital platforms need not act as the "arbiter of truth" but people aren't buying it.
On Tuesday, microblogging site Twitter slapped a fact-check label on US President Donald Trump's tweets about mail-in ballots. The move was welcomed by many who believed the user accounts got away with many such misleading opinions spread by public figures without any accountability or intervention by Twitter.
Trump, who was on the receiving end, did not like it one bit and warned the social media platforms that the government would "strongly regulate" them or "close them down" for allegedly silencing conservative voices.
....happen again. Just like we can’t let large scale Mail-In Ballots take root in our Country. It would be a free for all on cheating, forgery and the theft of Ballots. Whoever cheated the most would win. Likewise, Social Media. Clean up your act, NOW!!!!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 27, 2020
People watched Trump's meltdown, expressed their thoughts over Twitter's historic fact-check move and the world moved on.
But then arrived the chief of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg.
Speaking to Fox News, Zuckerberg slammed rival company Twitter. "I just believe strongly that Facebook shouldn't be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online," he said. "Private companies probably shouldn't be, especially these platform companies, shouldn't be in the position of doing that."
Zuckerberg also added that the Trump or government's warning to closely monitoring, censoring the platform wasn't the "right reflex". Social media users, who aren't very fond of Zuckerberg, and his strange mannerisms in general, found a new reason to school the Facebook chief.
We should live in a democracy where it doesn’t matter what mark zuckerberg thinks — Jake Maccoby (@jdmaccoby) May 28, 2020
Shorter Mark Zuckerberg: Allowing people to lie on Facebook is extremely lucrative.
— JRehling (@JRehling) May 28, 2020
Mark Zuckerberg says social media platforms shouldn't be the arbiter of truth. Is this a joke? His own platform, Facebook, is the motherlode of harcore online censorship and invasive fact-checking. pic.twitter.com/V9yyCQnywd — Ridvan Aydemir | Apostate Prophet (@ApostateRidvan) May 28, 2020
Mark Zuckerberg would like you to think he's the head of a tech company. He's not. He's the head of a media company. The world's largest. Every day he rejects his obligation to the truth is a day Facebook helps pandemics spread, white nationalism expand, and authoritarians win.
— Shannon Coulter (@shannoncoulter) May 28, 2020
Aaron Sorkin writing Mark Zuckerberg as a power hungry, morally bankrupt sociopath in “The Social Network” is probably the best thing he ever did. — Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) May 28, 2020
Asked how he feels about Twitter fact-checking Trump's tweets, Mark Zuckerberg responded, "What is 'feel'?" pic.twitter.com/raJuppGoW1
— JRehling (@JRehling) May 28, 2020
Quis·ling /ˈkwizliNG/ noun A traitor who collaborates with an enemy force occupying their country. "Mark #Zuckerberg is a Quisling." — Dr. Jack Brown (@DrGJackBrown) May 28, 2020
Dear fellow citizens: This may come as a minor shock to some of you but I am a former citizen of the Silicon Valley ecosystem. I swear to you this is a fact: Zuckerberg, bad guy. Dorsey, good guy. Drop your Facebook accounts. Find out how to get a domain. Launch your own web site
— Richard Saunders (@BoycottUtah) May 28, 2020
This, however, isn't the first time Zuckerberg has faced the wrath of the Internet. Last year around the same time, the CEO "joked" about Facebook's privacy issues at the company's annual F8 developer conference.
This came in the wake of Cambridge Analytica scandal - the alleged hijacking of data of millions of Facebook users and company's admission of storing millions of its users' passwords in plain text and "readable" format for years. Unsurprisingly, his "joke" fell flat on its face and the Facebook chief was at the mercy of online critics, who couldn't help but cringe at his attempt.
Here are the two tweets by Trump that were flagged by Twitter in case you're curious:
....living in the state, no matter who they are or how they got there, will get one. That will be followed up with professionals telling all of these people, many of whom have never even thought of voting before, how, and for whom, to vote. This will be a Rigged Election. No way! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2020