Amid growing concerns that Facebook has been guilty of permitting the use of filters to suppress trending news with a conservative slant, CEO Mark Zuckerberg invited an elite group of conservative personalities to come to Facebook’s headquarters to answer said charges.
Among some of the more notable conservatives in attendance were Dana Perino, former Press Secretary to ex-President George W. Bush, TV personality Glenn Beck, Donald Trump campaign adviser Barry Bennett, CNN commentator SE Cupp, Jim DeMint and Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson. Based on comments made by some of the conservative group members after the meeting, it appears they were given ample opportunity to express their concerns and felt as though Zuckerberg paid attention to what they had to say.
These allegations were first brought to the forefront by the tech blog Gizmodo, where former Facebook employees in charge of tracking trending stories on Facebook’s home page claimed other employees were using a variety of methods to hide conservative news stories that supported conservative ideologies.
For an organization like Facebook, which banks its reputation on providing diversity in all regards, any claims of bias could have a damaging effect on its overall reputation. Facebook’s charter is to gain and maintain as many members as possible with no regard for race, religion, sex or political affiliation. It’s admirable that Zuckerberg responded quickly to these allegations that only recently surfaced on the Internet.
In a post-meeting written comment, Zuckerberg explained why he wanted to get out in front of these allegations. He stated, “I know many conservatives don’t trust that our platform surfaces content without a political bias. I wanted to hear their concerns personally and have an open conversation about how we can build trust. I want to do everything I can to make sure our teams uphold the integrity of our products.”