It will never be feasible for Facebook to launch a news service with seasoned journalists who can also present conservative news. It is back to square one for them, as Conservatives are not having it.
Granted Facebook tried to invoke the wonders of it’s clients doing the self-policing but the real truth is that all sorts of fringe elements can post freely. You wonder if even in this highly charged political atmosphere if anything in terms of content could be agreed upon and layer in a serious regulation clause, ie, it must be based on facts, not made up of conspiracy theories. And it only takes a moment to refer to what #CambridgeAnalytics did with the FB client base, and move to what #EpochTimes. #RussianTrollFarms and #Breitbart all can still do.
What now Facebook?
On the same day that Facebook announced its intent to rehire journalists to curate news on its platform, it also shared the results of an audit of supposed anti-conservative bias conducted by former GOP senator Jon Kyl. The report, which collected responses from “more than 130 leading conservative politicians and organizations,” outlines the well-worn fears of conservatives without substantiating any of them. The report has been roundly criticized, even from Republican Facebook critics. “Merely asking somebody to listen to conservatives’ concerns isn’t an ‘audit,’ it’s a smokescreen disguised as a solution,” Missouri senator Josh Hawley said in a statement advocating that Facebook make its actual underlying distribution and moderation systems available to third-party analysis.
“Several interviewees believed that this change disproportionately decreased the reach of conservative news content (as compared to liberal news content),” the report states, referencing a much-publicized News Feed ranking change in 2018 that prioritized posts from personal contacts over brand pages. Despite this, sites like Fox News, Ben Shapiro’s Daily Wire, and Breitbart still get healthy distribution on Facebook; in some cases, they perform better than other mainstream outlets that aim down the center.
…There is no appeasing conservatives here. The algorithms are biased, and if Facebook hires editors and moderators to double-check decisions made by algorithms, those editors will be denounced as biased too. Facebook, according to the Times , will only hire “seasoned” editors. It’s not clear what that means, but it is clear that Establishment journalists aren’t going to quiet the charges of bias either. You don’t exactly see conservatives respecting established news outlets like the New York Times and CNN or the editorial staff that works there. Unless Facebook has suddenly grown a backbone, its rebooted News initiative will be another way for conservatives to badger the company into appeasement.