Amanda Marcotte: Facebook The Latest Victim Of ‘Scam’ That Facilitates Spread Of ‘Conservative Lies’

Posted on Fri 05/27/2016 by

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Tom Johnson picture-58-1409692124By Tom Johnson ~

Conservatives who accuse media outlets of liberal bias are a lot like shakedown artists, suggested Salon’s Amanda Marcotte in a Tuesday piece. In this context, the targets of the allegations don’t pay protection money; instead, they “bend…over backwards to placate” right-wingers, thereby “injecting conservative bias into the process as journalists, afraid of seeming too ‘liberal,’ hold conservative accusations and claims to a lower standard of scrutiny.”

amanda_marcotte_1Marcotte wrote that there’s “no real merit” to claims that Facebook gave short shrift to conservative-friendly news items. Nonetheless, she added, Facebook is seeking to “appease the bad faith ‘concerns’ of conservatives…which was probably the point…of generating this non-scandal in the first place: To pressure Facebook to remove safeguards, so that conservative lies and conspiracy theories can spread widely and quickly.”

From Marcotte’s article (bolding added):

History has long shown that a right wing “expose” will almost invariably…turn out to be a hoax perpetuated by conservative activists. No, ACORN was not helping pimps run illegal prostitution rings. Sorry, Planned Parenthood doesn’t have a black market in fetal tissue

…Facebook has conducted an internal investigation and found…that this latest “scandal” burning up the conservative blogs has no real merit…

[But] Facebook is still bending over backwards to appease the bad faith “concerns” of conservatives. The biggest concession is that Facebook will no longer be using “lists of external websites and news outlets to identify, validate or assess the importance of particular topics”.

…[Those lists] functioned as a necessary level of quality control…Without [them] there’s good reason to be concerned that it will be easier for right wing hoaxes and conspiracy theories to crack into Trending Topics…

Which was probably the point, for conservatives, of generating this non-scandal in the first place: To pressure Facebook to remove safeguards, so that conservative lies and conspiracy theories can spread widely and quickly…

Conservatives have been playing this game for a long time. They accuse mainstream media sources of having “liberal bias”. Those media sources, eager to seem objective, end up bending over backwards to placate conservatives. Ironically, this ends up injecting conservative bias into the process as journalists, afraid of seeming too “liberal”, hold conservative accusations and claims to a lower standard of scrutiny…

Now it appears the right is running the same scam on news aggregators…

…Trying to placate sleazy liars in hopes they will stop lying about you is a really bad idea.

Tom Johnson is a contributing writer for NewsBusters.

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