Stating that there is more than “merely a communications problem” in play, the chairman of the American Conservative Union and its annual Conservative Political Action Conference said he and the organization have declined an invitation to attend this week’s meeting that prominent conservatives are having with Facebook over its reported suppression of conservative topics.
ACU Chairman Matt Schlapp said in a statement that Facebook and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, need to do a lot more than just meet with some well-known conservatives, after news broke last week that the social media website was keeping conservative-based news, including stories about Ted Cruz, The Blaze and CPAC, out of its trending topics section.
In the statement, Schlapp, who also runs the American Conservative Union, wrote, “If Facebook wants the benefit of the doubt, they need to start with complete transparency on how decisions are made concerning its newsfeeds.”
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He continued, “This is much bigger than just having a meeting with ‘leading conservatives,’ and winning the day’s news cycle.”
Schlapp elaborated further, stating, “The Gizmodo story has exposed the rift between Facebook’s liberal perspective and the hundreds of millions of Americans who self-identify as conservative,” adding, “Facebook has a history of agitating against conservatives and conservative policies, especially when it comes to ACU’s own conference, CPAC.”
The Daily Caller reports that a CPAC spokesperson found glaring differences between the amount of traction the exact same news stories have received on Facebook as opposed to Twitter.
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For instance, in February, CPAC sent out a release that conservative talk show host Dana Loesch was going to be a guest speaker at CPAC’s annual meeting in March. On Facebook, the news received 1,189 views while the same story was seen 48,697 times on Twitter.
Another example was CPAC’s announcement that Donald Trump would not be attending the annual gathering. The news had 29,147 views on Facebook compared with 745,035 on Twitter.
While CPAC will not be attending the meeting with Facebook, other leading conservatives will be there including Glenn Beck, Dana Perino and S.E. Cupp.
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