Multiple pundits and reporters are hitting President Biden for taking back his remarks that Facebook is “killing people” with coronavirus misinformation, saying he admittedly pushed misinformation himself.
“They are killing people,” Biden said about Facebook in reply to a reporter’s inquiry on Friday. “The only covid pandemic we have is the one among unvaccinated Americans, and they are killing people.”
Asked to clarify his controversial words on Monday, Biden restricted his targets to 12 spreaders of what he says is harmful misinformation about the covid-19 virus and the vaccines.
“Facebook stressed that most of the disinformation was from 12 people,” Biden said. “Facebook is not killing people. These 12 individuals are. My hope is they do something about misinformation about the vaccines.”
The Verge journalist Alex Heath replied to Biden’s clarification, saying that, “you should not take me labeling you a murderer personally.”
“Not the admin.’s finest hour,” said NBC’s Dylan Byers.
Others, like David A. Graham and CNN reporter Scott Jennings, wondered if the Biden Admin. was guilty of the same sort of “misinformation” the admin. mentioned on Friday.
“So was the past comment…misinformation?” Graham asked.
Facebook put out a defensive comment after Biden’s initial accusation, saying that their platform “is saving lives.”,.,
“We will not get distracted by accusations which are not supported by facts,” Facebook said. “The fact is over 2 billion people have looked at authoritative information about the vaccines and virus on Facebook, which is more than anywhere else on the internet. Over 3.3 million people in America have also used Facebook’s vaccine tool to see where they can get their vaccine. The facts prove that Facebook is saving lives. Period.”
The White House unveiled its partnership with Big Tech to censor so-called coronavirus “misinformation,” with Jen Psaki, the White House Press Secretary, saying the Biden team is “ensuring social media platforms are updated on the latest narratives.” Critics said the effort will do little more than harm free speech and stressed that Facebook’s checkered past on finding misinformation, like when it censored posts about the lab-leak theory put doubt on its attempts.
Author: Steven Sinclaire