(DailyDig.com) – A recent legal battle between Facebook and American television presenter John Stossel has uncovered something bizarre, but perhaps not entirely unexpected. It appears Facebook’s “fact-checkers,” who are responsible for adding warnings to allegedly false news stories and shares, aren’t exactly experts in rooting out the truth.
Furthermore, not everything Facebook preaches is factual.
The lawsuit in question stems from an incident in which the app’s fact-checkers labeled Stossel’s climate change work as misleading and false. The tv presenter subsequently filed a defamation suit against the platform, who then countered, stating that their fact-checkers and any related labels “constitute protected opinions” when going by the definition of defamation.
But the legal battle itself isn’t the story here. It’s what the battle is uncovering that’s making headlines.
Facebook Just Admitted in Court That its ‘Fact-Checks’ Are Just Third Party ‘Opinions’. https://t.co/eZr7dC9YSV
— The National Pulse – RSS Feed (@TheNatPulseRSS) December 14, 2021
Evidence in the case indicated that Facebook’s fact-checkers aren’t really checking facts. Instead, they’re expressing their own personal opinions.
Under Libel Law, the foundation of Facebook’s defense, opinions are exempt from defamation laws within the US legal system. By claiming the fact checks are opinion only, they ultimately protect themselves from any sort of responsibility. But while this shaky position may essentially let them escape the frying pan, they’re likely to land directly in the fire.
The app’s own legal defense team admits that Facebook fact-checks are basically politically-biased opinions from Facebook staff and third parties. Worse yet, it appears that the fact-checkers are fake across the board rather than concentrated in specific topics. Can anything they say or do really be trusted?
These revelations pose a serious problem: the public has no reason to believe anything that Facebook says. So, how would anyone know whether the information they post is even accurate? That’s why it’s always important for people to do their own research and find the facts for themselves, rather than relying solely on social media platforms.
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