Facebook was created in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and fellow Harvard University students. After going public in May of 2012, Facebook has only continued to grow and is the largest social media and social networking service on the planet. With over 2.2 billion active users and a market capitalization of $631.23 billion, it has become a global titan of the social media industry.
Currently, Zuckerberg indirectly holds 14.18 million Class A Facebook shares within several different funds and 441.6 million Class B shares. This control of 89% of all Class B shares has given Zuckerberg 60% of the voting rights in the company.
So while Zuckerberg talks a lot about protecting democracy, Facebook, like all the big tech companies, is really run like an autocracy, despite the fact that the company is publicly traded and Zuckerberg is a minority shareholder. Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, is an outspoken liberal.
Masquerading as a Technology Platform
In 2016 The Pew Research Center came out with a report that said 44% of all U.S. adults are getting their news from Facebook. In total, 66% of all Facebook users get their news there. This finding flies in the face of Zuckerberg's feeble claims that Facebook is really a tech platform – not a media company. Unfortunately, Facebook is and should be considered one of the most liberal media companies in the world.
- It looks like Facebook has its sights set on becoming king of online video content – move over YouTube – Facebook is getting into video creation.
- Facebook even has a new tab in the works for mobile devices that will recommend shows and other longer video content created specifically for Facebook's platform.
In addition to content creation, Facebook also currently has an immense amount of influence through its recommendations to users.
Not only does Facebook suggest movies, books, games and news articles, in 2016 it pushed out a new recommendation feature that can tell you where to go and what to do for fun locally, help you to buy tickets or make reservations, and get you in touch with local businesses to order food, make appointments etc.
YOU SEE WHAT FACEBOOK WANTS YOU TO SEE
Employees Confess, Internal Liberal Bias is Rife
- Facebook's trending news module began in 2014 and reaches millions of people – 167 million in America – (dictating what news Facebook users see on a daily basis).
- Several former Facebook employees have reported they were instructed to artificially insert predetermined stories into Facebook's trending news module, even when they did not meet trending criteria used in the algorithm. Moreover, they were specifically told not to include any news articles about Facebook in the trending module.
- Facebook internally calls these employees "news curators". We might call them "censors" or "news manipulators".
- Apparently an algorithm "accident" was to blame in 2016 when Facebook blocked links to DNC emails exposed by WikiLeaks.
- In 2016 Facebook Employees fought to remove then-presidential candidate Trump's Facebook posts as "hate speech". Which brings up an interesting point. The modern term "hate speech" can be used to label just about anything that is critical of the values of whoever is doing the labeling.
So it provides cover for censorship on any of the social media channels, or anywhere else for that matter. If we criticize Martin Luther King are we indulging in racist hate speech, or legitimate criticism of a cultural icon?
If you doubt how easily the fight against "hate speech" can be abused, note that the owner and director of the leading cable news network in Nicaragua was recently arrested and charged with "inciting hatred". His crime? Covering protests across Nicaragua against the ruling regime. It's very easy for anyone in authority to use the "hate speech" label to quench criticism of the government, or the reigning orthodoxy.
- In August of 2018, a senior Facebook engineer, Brian Amerige, wrote an internal post on a message board titled "We Have a Problem With Political Diversity". Once the memo was leaked to the New York Times, a group of over 100 Facebook employees joined in protest of the liberally intolerant culture within their company.
|"It was absolutely bias," the curator told Gizmodo. "We were doing it subjectively. It just depends on who the curator is and what time of day it is."|
Banning, Shadow Banning and Facebook's Algorithm
- Shadow banning has recently come under significant scrutiny as a tactic of the left to censor and prevent others from seeing conservative content online. It's also referred to as "stealth banning" and "ghost banning". Shadow banning occurs when an account or content is blocked or partially blocked from an online community such as Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube. While users are informed of being banned outright, shadow banning involves methods that ensure the page or account's lack of visibility is not readily apparent to the user or the community.
- Facebook implemented a new algorithm in February of 2018 that is clearly aimed at destroying any fair representation of conservative viewpoints and media. The change lined up nicely with an unprecedented drop in Trump's Facebook engagement – down 45%! Not surprisingly, Liberal politicians' engagement was unaffected.
- Facebook is not the only guilty party known to engage in banning of individuals with conservative viewpoints. In August of 2018, content from the American radio host and conservative conspiracy theorist Alex Jones was removed by Facebook, Apple and YouTube. Weeks later Jones would also be banned by Twitter. The important issue here is not whether Jones is right or wrong; the issue is whether he has the same rights as any other social media user in a democracy to express whatever points of view - right or wrong - that he holds.
- It's interesting that in avoiding persecution for libel social media platforms have held that they are merely tools, not to be held accountable when a user libels some person or organization. But if they are really simply tools, why are they taking an active role in censoring content?
- The list of conservatives and critics of the banning policies that are affected by Facebook's liberal agenda continues to grow and should concern anyone that supports free speech and the first amendment:
- Lauren Southern, known Trump supporter and conservative.
- Top conservative pages like Young Cons, SarahPalin.com, and the Gateway Pundit have all seen significant drops in Facebook traffic– between 75-95%!
- When asked about their banning process, Facebook provided a vague and seemingly arbitrary means of demoting pages.
FACEBOOK EXECS ESPOUSE LIBERAL AGENDA
Sheryl Sandberg's Unabashed Liberalism
Sheryl Sandberg is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Facebook, essentially the second most powerful person after Facebook's founder. Sandberg proudly and prominently displays her political affiliation and support of the Democratic Party and its members. It's no wonder Facebook struggles with internal political intolerance when those at the top so clearly endorse a liberal agenda and shun other viewpoints.
Sandberg's Political Contributions
- Zuckerberg's political contributions to individual candidates do not reveal much about his affiliation, his largest donation to date – $10,000 – was given to the Democratic Party in 2015. In 2018, Zuckerberg's only contribution was a paltry $5,000 to Facebook's own PAC.
- Sandberg has been much more vocal with her dollars in 2018's election cycle than Zuckerberg. Facebook's COO maxed out her political contributions to:
- Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.)
- Steny Hoyer (D. Md.)
- Zoe Lofgren (D. Calif.)
- Claire McCaskill (D. Mo.)
- Dianne Feinstein (D. Calif.)
- Kristen Gillibrand (D., N.Y.)
- This election cycle Sandberg has also contributed $25,000 to a progressive PAC that focuses on electing Democratic, pro-choice woman to office.
Sandberg Colludes with the DNC
- As if Sandberg's political dollars weren't enough to convince us of her liberal agenda, her collusion with the Clinton Campaign should be.
- Sandberg's 2016 emails with John Podesta were revealed by WikiLeaks and made it clear they were both looking forward to working together to get Clinton elected. She even wrote a lengthy endorsement of Clinton in 2016 using her Facebook account.
- Before the Clinton Campaign was officially in play, Sandberg was also on team Obama. She hosted the "Victory Fund 2012" dinner at her residence in Atherton - $38,500 per plate.
Sandberg's Feminist Manifesto
- Sandberg has been painted as the "face of boardroom feminism" for her book Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead published in March of 2013.
- Lean In appealed to business women and upper-middle class professionals and touched on such barriers women face in the workplace and how they can overcome.
- Sandberg founded Leanin.org in conjunction with the release of her book. Leanin.org is a 501 nonprofit dedicated to the same feminist views espoused in her book. Much of the activity for leanin.org was funneled from, you guessed it, Facebook.
Facebook Vs. Trump
- Zuckerberg and Sandberg both begged congress to resolve DACA and were whole heartedly in favor of granting amnesty.
- Sandberg also spoke out against Trump in 2017 when he talked about defunding abortions. Later she would donate $1 million to Planned Parenthood in protest of President Trump's Executive Order.
- Zuckerberg and Sandberg both jumped on the band wagon to end President Trump's Zero-tolerance immigration policy in June of 2018. They even went as far as to donate to RAICES, an advocacy group for illegal alien families that attempt to cross the border into the U.S. from Mexico.
PUBLIC POLICY LOBBYING
Facebook Inc. PAC
In 2017 Facebook's PAC spent $11.51 million on lobbying efforts. It looks like 2018 will be another big year of spending with $6.97 million spent and several months left to go.
- The top five specific issues that Facebook Inc. has lobbied over include:
- Computers and Information Tech
(e.g., monitoring data, privacy/security legislation; online advertising, content and platform transparency, diversity in the workplace)
(e.g., warrants and surveillance, cyber security, surveillance reform, FISA amendments)
- Homeland Security
(e.g., cyber security, information sharing, encryption policy, machine learning)
(e.g., comprehensive immigration reform, DACA, worker visas)
(e.g., the tax cuts and jobs act H.R. 1, corporate taxes, international tax policy, comprehensive tax reform)
With the issues above, its hard to tell when shareholder funds are being used to advance legitimate corporate interests, and when they're being used to advance Sandberg or Zuckerberg's personal political agenda. For instance, are they spending money on immigration lobbying because Facebook needs access to more programmers from India? Immigrants crossing the Mexican border contain few if any people who Facebook wants to hire. Given that Sandberg donates her own money to the same issues that Facebook uses shareholder money for, what is the line between corporate lobbying and stealing money from shareholder's to advance the personal agenda of executives?
- Computers and Information Tech
Facebook's Lobbying Efforts and the Cambridge Analytica Scandal
- When pressure for Facebook to explain its data sharing practices to congress blew up, the company immediately began looking for additional lobbyists to come to their aid in D.C. It was reported that they were looking to fill an additional 11 positions beyond the existing 40 internal and external lobbyists already employed.
- Over the course of the congressional hearings, Zuckerberg answered questions from almost 100 different legislators. Many of these politicians also got a cut of Facebook's $7 million in campaign contributions doled out over the last decade.
- $641,685 was contributed to several congressmen and women since 2014 including top beneficiaries Senators Cory Booker (D, Nj.), Kamala Harris (D-Ca.), and Anna Eshoo (D, Ca.).
Zuckerberg's New PAC – FWD.us
Zuckerberg and one of his close friends Joe Green founded this 501(c)(4) that has essentially become an "open borders" group since its inception in 2013. FWD.us is supported by a team of tech titans and other billionaires including Bill Gates, Reid Hoffman, and Jeff Rothschild.
Moving "FWD" with Open Borders and Amnesty
While FWD.us claims to be an organization seeking to keep the U.S. competitive in the global economy, it's really just an "open borders" advocacy group:
- "Zuckerberg's Open Borders Group: Enforcing Immigration Law ‘Hurts Public Safety'"[Breitbart, 5/22/2017].
- "Zuckerberg's Open Borders Group Likes Tax-funded Lawyers for Illegals"[Breitbart, 6/28/2017].
- "FWD.us isn't happy Congress failed to protect Dreamers" [Mashable, 12/21/2017].
- FWD.us is also working together with RAICES and Families Belong Together, two other open borders and pro-amnesty groups, to pay millions for flights for separated illegal alien families. These families were apprehended at the southern border due to President Trump's "Zero Tolerance" policy.
- FWD.us has made it clear to conservative politicians that they will bankroll ads in their home states if they vote with FWD on immigration issues.
THE FACEBOOK MONOPOLY
With the sheer volume of evidence pointing to Facebook's leftist agenda, it should be extremely concerning that they exhibit so many monopolistic qualities.
Join Facebook, or Be Copied By Facebook
- At one point in his two-day testimony before congress, Zuckerberg was asked to name Facebook's top competitor. During Senator Lindsey Graham's (R, Sc.) line of questioning about Facebook's potential status as a monopoly, Zuckerberg could not pin down one company, but attempted to skirt the question by naming companies that compete with Facebook in specific categories.
- Like many other businesses, Snapchat is suffering at the hands of Facebook's unchecked monopolistic activities. Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012. Five years later, Instagram copied key features of Snapchat and then passed Snapchat in total number of user accounts.
- It's not just Snapchat, several other tech startup features have also been pilfered by Facebook including Foresquare's check-in feature. It is apparently a general understanding among companies competing with Facebook that they have two choices: sell out to Facebook, or be copied by them.
The reality of being purchased by Facebook or copied by them means that Facebook has become a one stop shop for virtually every social media service.
|February 2014||Largest, most geographically diverse messaging service with more than 1.5 billion (with a B) users since Q4 2017.||$19 B|
|March 2014||Oculus VR||Virtual reality gaming platform.||$2 B|
|April 2012||Social media/picture sharing site.||$1 B|
|August 2014||LiveRail||Web and mobile video startup that connects publishers with marketers.||$500 M|
|February 2013||Atlas||Digital media measurement platform focused on data collection and analysis of tools ad campaigns and marketing agencies.||$100 M|
|June 2012||Face.com||Facial recognition software company.||$100 M|
|July 2018||Redkix||Team messaging||$100 M|
|April 2013||Parse||Program developed to follow other Apps (growth/decline), alerting FB to other potential acquisitions.||$85 M|
|March 2011||Snaptu||Company focused on developing, maintaining, delivering better services for mobile devices.||$70 M|
|July 2015||Pebbles Interfaces||Gesture control virtual reality platform.||$60 M|
|March 2014||Ascenta||Solar power drones designer.||$20 M|
Note: This is not an exhaustive list of acquisitions and there are many other acquisitions for which Facebook has yet to disclose purchase prices.