Dear Mark Zuckerberg,
Over the past year, the Biden for President campaign has called on Facebook to meet the commitment the company made after 2016 — to use its platform to improve American democracy rather than as a tool to spread disinformation that undermines our elections. The campaign has proposed meaningful ways to check disinformation on your platform and to limit the effect of false ads.
But Facebook has taken no meaningful action. It continues to allow Donald Trump to say anything — and to pay to ensure that his wild claims reach millions of voters. SuperPACs and other dark money groups are following his example. Trump and his allies have used Facebook to spread fear and misleading information about voting, attempting to compromise the means of holding power to account: our voices and our ballot boxes.
So where do we go from here?
We have offered the following concrete recommendations to fix the problems in Facebook’s platform that pose a threat to free and fair elections.
We call for Facebook to proactively stem the tide of false information by no longer amplifying untrustworthy content and promptly fact-checking election-related material that goes viral.
We call for Facebook to stop allowing politicians to hide behind paid misinformation in the hope that the truth will catch up only after Election Day. There should be a two-week pre-election period during which all political advertisements must be fact-checked before they are permitted to run on Facebook.
And we call for clear rules — applied to everyone, including Donald Trump — that prohibit threatening behavior and lies about how to participate in the election.
Anything less will render Facebook a tool of misinformation that corrodes our democracy. Facebook has promised better. And American voters deserve better.
Right now, we’re less than 150 days to the election. The time for setting, testing, and implementing meaningful policy to protect our elections is running out.
Facebook — do the right thing. Do your part and change your policies to ensure we have a fair election this November.