Mark Zuckerberg recognizes Biden as winner of election in staff email

Company insiders are reportedly relieved that the social media giant has thus far managed to avoid major allegations of election interference using its platform

Graig Graziosi
Friday 13 November 2020 17:48
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg sent an email to employees on Thursday acknowledging that Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States.  

Mr Zuckerberg is the latest high-profile individual to formally recognise Mr Biden's victory over Donald Trump and comes amid criticism of Facebook’s role in spreading misinformation.

"I believe the outcome of the election is now clear and Joe Biden is going to be our next president," Mr Zuckerberg said at a companywide meeting, according to BuzzFeed News.  

He emphasized that it was important that Americans believe in the electoral process.  

"It’s important that people have confidence that the election was fundamentally fair, and that goes for the tens of millions of people that voted for Trump," Mr Zuckerberg wrote.

Prior to the announcement, Facebook faced criticism from members of the Biden campaign over what they view as the social media platform's lackluster job of curbing disinformation and misinformation and for its policy on political ads.

Megan Clasen, a Biden campaign media adviser, wrote a tweet comparing the statements of numerous media outlets who proclaimed Mr Biden the winner of the election against a vague memo sent out by Facebook prior to Mr Zuckerberg's email.  

The vague statement included the line "While multiple sources have projected a presidential winner..." without actually naming who the winner was.  

Despite the criticism, Facebook appears to be facing far less scrutiny this year than it did following the 2016 election when allegations from Democrats that there had been foreign interference in the election was rampant.  

CNBC reported that the feeling inside the company was one of relief now that the 2020 election has passed and there are no explosive accusations being made against the company.  

The email also addressed former Trump adviser Steve Bannon.  

According to Mr Zuckerberg, Mr Bannon - who recently called for FBI Director Chris Wray and the White House’s leading infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci's heads to be put on spikes outside the White House - has not violated enough of the social media platform's rules to warrant an account suspension.  

The company did remove a number of pages connected to Bannon, but they were removed for artificially inflating their reach.

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