January 24 2018

Facebook's Zuckerberg Defends Company After Critical Trump Tweet

January 24 2018, 01:53 | Van Peters

Russia reportedly bought thousands of politically-charged Facebook ads

Russia's President Vladimir Putin smiles in the Novo Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow

Burr told reporters Tuesday that the use of Facebook and other social media platforms by Russian-linked accounts appears to be about creating chaos on both ends of the political spectrum, not necessarily collusion between the Trump camp and Russian officials.

On Thursday, Twitter is scheduled to meet behind closed doors with staff on both the Senate and the House intelligence committees.

The Senate Intelligence Committee has asked executives from Facebook, Google, and Twitter to testify before the US Congress about Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 US election, Reuters reported.

Those ad buys alone topped the $100,000 that Facebook had linked to a Russian propaganda operation, a revelation that prompted calls from some Democrats for new disclosure rules for online political ads. The hearings come amid frustration from some senior lawmakers with what they say is Facebook's less-than-forthcoming initial response, which has the company and its Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg in particular playing defence.

"We look forward to hearing more from Twitter as we continue to investigate how Russian Federation sought to push disinformation and fake news through the use of bots and false personas to influence the outcome of the election", said Schiff said in a statement after Twitter executives met with the committee. "We need to think very carefully about what role we want these companies to have in our debate - and, since these platforms largely regulate themselves, what kind of accountability we want them to have".

Facebook did not return The Daily Caller News Foundation's request for comment in time for publication.

Moscow's intelligence agencies not only used secret cyberattacks to steal and leak information, as the US intelligence community concluded.

The group bought Facebook ads to reach targeted audiences, promoting political rallies aimed at Muslims, the website reported.

"That's what running a platform for all ideas looks like", Zuckerberg said on Wednesday. "We, as a company, should not be the arbiter of truth".

"After an extensive legal and policy review, today we are announcing that we will also share these ads with congressional investigators", Facebook's general counsel, Colin Stretch, wrote.

"They have never tried to prevent fake accounts, use of bots". "They don't deny they have allowed more anonymity". "We learned a lot, and will continue to apply those lessons in other forthcoming elections".

The social media giant told Congressional investigators that these accounts were found to be linked to the Russian government. "That's 1000x more than any problematic ads we've found", he said. "The ads that we've been talking about, the reason that we removed those was because they were coming from inauthentic accounts", she said.

Warner said he hoped Twitter would be more cooperative.

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