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Zuckerberg Runs Into Backlash Over Holocaust Comments

He spoke of how Facebook wouldn't remove posts denying it took place
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 19, 2018 9:05 AM CDT
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

(Newser) – Mark Zuckerberg has found himself mired in a new controversy, this time stemming from comments he made about Holocaust deniers who post on Facebook. In an interview with Kara Swisher of recode, Zuckerberg was discussing the kinds of things Facebook does and does not take down, and he said that posts denying that the Holocaust took place would generally be allowed to stay up, though they'd get downgraded in the news feed. The backlash came swiftly, prompting Zuckerberg to clarify what he meant. The details:

  • Original comments: In the interview—you can read the full transcript here—Zuckerberg notes that he's Jewish and finds Holocaust denials "deeply offensive." But, he adds, "At the end of the day, I don’t believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong. I don’t think that they’re intentionally getting it wrong..."
  • Further explaining: Swisher interjects to say that Holocaust deniers might indeed be intentionally lying, and Zuckerberg elaborates: "It’s hard to impugn intent and to understand the intent." He again says some people just "get things wrong," and "I just don’t think that it is the right thing to say, 'We’re going to take someone off the platform if they get things wrong, even multiple times.' What we will do is we’ll say, 'OK, you have your page, and if you’re not trying to organize harm against someone, or attacking someone, then you can put up that content on your page, even if people might disagree with it or find it offensive.'"

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