Facebook full of lies about elections, US census, internal studies

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According to an internal company study obtained by The Post, fear-provoking posts that discourage Americans from voting in US elections and participating in the US census are rampant on Facebook.

According to a 2019 survey of 3,000 users, 20 percent of US Facebook users saw content that would prevent or interfere with their election.

Some posts encourage Donald Trump’s supporters to vote online – an impossible proposition – while others have falsely claimed that voters should stay at home by voting because Trump has already won, according to user text responses to Facebook.

Some potential voters said they could register to vote online in non-elected states, while others were encouraged to stay home on Election Day to “make a statement.”

“There are a lot of fake news accounts that post false information trying to keep people from voting,” one user in the study concluded.

The study’s disclosure – which did not verify the sources of the misleading posts but claims how many users have seen them – takes the Facebook fire for failing to contain hate speech and false news. Leaked Messages Some Facebook employees believe that Mark Zuckerberg has an advantage over security, with one declaring that “history does not kindly judge us.”

Leaked Facebook records show that one in five users has seen “interference” content about elections.

The study, titled “Consumer Perspectives on Voter and Census Refusal”, was revealed in the disclosures to the Securities and Exchange Commission and was provided to Congress in the form of Facebook whistleblower Francis Haugen’s legal counsel. A consortium of news organizations, including The Post, has received revised versions of Congress.

The study showed that one in three users reported seeing some kind of false news about elections on Facebook, but nearly 15 percent viewed “direct calls from the census”.

Survey users said the lies spread on Facebook about the census included “conspiracy theory spam,” designed to prevent undocumented immigrants from responding to the census.

Screenshot of Facebook Stud
Facebook users have described false information about electioneering on the social network.

One user wrote that they had seen posts that said “there is a risk of deportation if people participate.” Another user reported seeing posts saying “Migrants don’t answer their doors” and “don’t respond to questions”.

Federal funds for schools, transportation, housing, and other government services are allocated on a population basis, reducing the state’s population in the US census, reducing that state’s share of government money.

The number of congressional representatives a state receives is allocated based on census data, so suppressing census responses can reduce the amount of influence that a particular state has in Washington.

Facebook spokesman Kevin McAllister said the company used the 2019 study to inform its policies during the 2020 election.

“Prior to the US 2020 elections, we invested in internal research to help teams identify where we can improve our products and policies,” McAllister said in a statement to the Post. ‚ÄúThis research has helped us to provide reliable information about voting through information labels and our voting information center, as well as ways to double the updates we have made to our voter intervention policies. We are proud to say that we have conducted the largest voting information effort in US history that has helped more than 4 million people register to vote.

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