Zuckerberg Defends Trump Policy in Tense Meeting

He says the 'right action' is to leave president's posts up
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 2, 2020 5:34 PM CDT
Zuckerberg Defends Decision on Trump's Facebook Posts
In this Oct. 23, 2019 photo, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before a House Financial Services Committee hearing.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

Mark Zuckerberg held firm on his decision not to take action on President Trump's Facebook posts during what insiders say was a tense town hall meeting with employees Tuesday. The CEO told employees that it was a "tough decision," but a review of Facebook's policies shows "that the right action where we are right now is to leave this up," per the New York Times. Facebook employees tell CNN that workers used a real-time feedback tool to remind Zuckerberg of the company's promise to remove content that calls for violence. Some Facebook workers staged a "virtual walkout" Monday to protest the company's failure to act on Trump's social media postings, including one that Twitter hid behind a warning for "glorifying violence."

A Facebook worker tells CNN that at one point, around 22,000 of the company's 48,000 employees were watching. The meeting—which was moved up to Tuesday from Thursday amid rising employee dissent—followed a Monday night meeting between Zuckerberg, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, and civil rights leaders, the Wall Street Journal reports. It did not go well, according to Vanita Gupta, president of of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights; Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.; and Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change. "We are disappointed and stunned by Mark’s incomprehensible explanations for allowing the Trump posts to remain up," they said in a statement. "He refuses to acknowledge how Facebook is facilitating Trump’s call for violence against protesters. Mark is setting a very dangerous precedent." (Read more Facebook stories.)

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