Facebook founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, defended his company's policies when it comes to moderating hate speech and misinformation in a call for profits on Thursday. He said: “We don't benefit from misinformation or hate.
"We don't want this content on our platforms," he continued. "As I said to Congress yesterday, I am proud of the services we are building."
At the antitrust hearing of the judiciary on Wednesday, Zuckerberg was attacked by lawmakers over the platform for the widespread and viral misinformation and conspiracy theories surrounding the coronavirus pandemic before Facebook eliminates it. In a fiery exchange, Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) accused Zuckerberg of benefiting from this type of "deadly content".
Zuckerberg responded to the attacks on Facebook's moderation guidelines in Thursday's call for profits, saying that 90% of the malicious and hateful content is removed by Facebook's artificial intelligence before anyone reports it. Zuckerberg, however, failed to mention how much misinformation can affect his platform. Just this week, a coronavirus conspiracy video incorrectly promoted hydroxychloroquine as an effective cure for coronavirus, and face masks won't prevent the spread of COVID-19, which was viewed over 20 million times before it was turned off. He also said that Facebook is also going through an independent review of its hate speech moderation to determine how effective its teams and operating systems are at removing them.
Both Zuckerberg and Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg appealed to the public advertising boycott against Facebook.
"Facebook is firmly against hatred," said Sandberg. "We don't benefit from it and never have it. Our users don't want to see it and our advertisers don't want to be associated with it.
"It is clear that we have a lot more to do," continued Sandberg. "Not because of the pressure from advertisers, but because it's the right thing to do."
Before the call to Zuckerberg on Thursday, Facebook published its earnings report, which remained largely unaffected by the over 500 companies that had decided to pull their money off the platform for July.
Zuckerberg added that Facebook will continue to work towards achieving its goal of registering 4 million users for the fall presidential election and will work to stop interference in the election. He also expects his workforce to stay away for the foreseeable future, blaming the Trump administration's lackluster policies for making the pandemic fatal by not listening to health officials.
"I expect this year to continue to be unpredictable," he said. "It is unclear what the economic outlook will look like … but bringing the virus under control means an economic recovery."