TUCSON— Today, Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03) and Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-02) sent a letter to Facebook Head of Global Policy Monika Bickert demanding answers on what Facebook is doing to address ongoing paid political disinformation on its platforms. This letter follows reports that Facebook is failing to implement its own policies concerning paid disinformation, potentially exposing millions of Arizona voters to false information in the weeks preceding the 2020 presidential election. Their letter read in part:
“As you know, CNN reported on research by the advocacy group Avaaz which found that collectively hundreds of ads containing or linking to disinformation were being run by the Super PACs America First Action and Stop Republicans. America First Action’s 451 ads reached almost 10 million impressions in four swing states with false and misleading information that’s been debunked by your own third party fact checkers and reputable newspapers. Stop Republicans’ 30 misleading ads ran nationally, earning more than 1.3 million impressions.
“Despite having the evidence for more than a week, Facebook has reportedly left many of the flagged ads up and even allowed new false ads from the same offending Super PACs. These ads containing false and misleading content appear to be in violation of Facebook’s promises to “secure the integrity of the US elections…” While Facebook does not fact-check politician’s ads, you make clear that Super PACs are covered by your third-party fact-checking program and must adhere to your prohibition on false and misleading advertising.
“As you know, Congress has an acute interest in the broad impacts of social media platforms and their ability to contain harmful content and protect private information.”
Click here to read the letter.