MPs Ask Facebook to Explain Green Light for Lying in Political Adverts

By Gary Cutlack on at

Despite Facebook adding new verification rules to supposedly help keep better track of wild statements made on the site, the fact that there's an enormous factual loophole in its political ad processes has led MPs to demand answers from the network's EU heat shield Nick Clegg.

Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg has previously said he thinks users of the social network should "...make up their own minds about what candidates are credible" when it comes to officially-endorsed political statements, a convenient standpoint to take, as it means any political advert that promises to relay the direct words of a candidate – even if literally fictional – is free from analysis for potentially containing misinformation, otherwise known as massive pork pies.

The existence of this odd position is but one question being asked of the site by the DCMS in a letter [PDF], with committee chair Damian Collins suggesting this rule constrains the network's ability to counter online disinformation; particularly in these weird post-truth days when politicians are able and willing to shake their heads and deny things happened or were said, even when confronted with video evidence of them happening and being said, by them, yesterday, are are still wearing the same socks. [Parliament via Guardian]