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Facebook Attempted To Edit One Of Its Reports To Protect The Social Network's Image, As Reported By The NYT

The New York Times has recently revealed that Facebook altered a data publication that reflected poorly on the company before making it public.

Facebook's image has been on a precipice for quite a while now. While the company is still chugging along, strong as ever, it has received no end of criticism for years on end. The social network was in hot water for not effectively curbing misinformation. The social network has also been criticized for its poor community moderation throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, being a major site of conspiracy theories and anti-vaccination rhetoric. The situation only further escalated when Facebook was also noted as being one of the platforms through with the 2021 US Capitol riots were planned out. Finally, the company was accused of harvesting personal user data via a change of policy by WhatsApp, one of the platforms that Facebook owns.

Naturally, with such an impressive resume, Facebook only wishes to improve its image in the general public. The company recently shared its plans to become water-positive by 2030, and even revealed details on how its offices all run on clean, renewable energy. However, it seems that the social network is still unable to escape public scrutiny. Case and point, a recent article by the prestigious New York Times, spilling out details on a certain report that Facebook may have altered to save it's own image.

The report in question refers to a publication by Facebook, highlighting it's most popular content across Q2 of 2021. This includes incredibly popular posts, videos, images, and trends. Facebook's intention, as stated by the company itself, was to provide an accurate display of the sort of content that generally gains popularity amongst the community. However, according to the New York Times, the ‘widely viewed content’ report was altered to omit a certain detail. The newspaper, going off of a copy of the report that they have obtained, reveals that the most viewed link on the platform had to do with a conspiracy toting headline. The headline stated that a healthy doctor mysteriously died 2 weeks after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

Naturally, this goes against the image that Facebook's so carefully attempting to cultivate. And, since no one else seems to have died of the vaccine, what with us being months into the program, it's fair to say that conspiracy nuts still run amok on the platform. Looks like Facebook will have to try again.


Photo: Dado Ruvic / Reuters

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