Zuckerberg implies Facebook is a media company, only “not a normal media company”

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Mark Zuckerberg gave new insights about how he sees Facebook’s purpose in informing a universe currently during a Live video one-on-one year-end discuss with COO Sheryl Sandberg. Facebook’s CEO also lent support to employees perplexing to quarrel feign news today, yet reports indicated some employees were discontented by his primarily temperate response to a issue.

“Facebook is a new kind of platform. It’s not a normal record company,” he pronounced today, mirroring his accurate difference from final week when Facebook launched product updates and partnerships with outward fact-checkers to quarrel feign news. But afterwards he went a step further, now observant “It’s not a normal media company. You know, we build record and we feel obliged for how it’s used.”

That implies Zuckerberg does in fact see Facebook as some kind of media company, only not like a aged ones that combined a calm themselves.

[Update: We’ve combined some-more sum on since a media tag matters]

This is a poignant change from how Zuckerberg has discussed Facebook and media in a past. In Aug while in Rome to accommodate a Pope, Reuters reports that Zuckerberg responded to an Italian who asked if Facebook would turn a news editor by observant “No, we are a tech company, not a media company.” He drew a line between Facebook and publishers, explaining that “The universe needs news companies, though also record platforms, like what we do, and we take a purpose in this unequivocally seriously.”

The reason this eminence matters is that pristine record platforms accept larger shield regarding the calm they serve, both legally and in a open eye. This stems from a 1996 Communications Decency Act’s Section 230(c), or a Good Samaritan act, that states “No provider or user of an interactive mechanism use shall be treated as a publisher or orator of any information supposing by another information calm provider.” Media companies are deliberate some-more directly obliged for their content.

facebook-mediaPrevious statements have seen Zuckerberg peaceful to have Facebook assume some of that shortcoming voluntarily, while avoiding a pretension of ‘media company’ that could trigger some-more technical liability.

Looking closer during a Facebook product compared to a newsroom of a media company, we could see a users as a reporters formulating a stories, while a News Feed algorithm acts as a editor, determining that stories to run and how prominently. Meanwhile, Facebook’s leaders who write a village standards and calm policies also act as editors, vetoing or permitting argumentative calm like reports of military shootings or bare chronological photographs.

Facebook writes a formula that relates these algorithms and policies like a record company, though it also creates editorial decisions about what to prioritize and permit, like a editor of a media company.


Later in a talk, he records that “reflecting on 2016, this is only something that I’m unapproachable that people in this association take so seriously,” referring to feign news. But immediately after a election, Zuckerberg was demure to acknowledge feign news was a large problem warranting obligatory attention.

That stirred a “renegade charge force” of employees to arrange and start assembly in secret, BuzzFeed’s Sheera Frenkel reported on Nov 14th. By Nov 18th, Zuckerberg had altered his tone, deliberating feign news as a some-more critical threat, and surveying 6 ways Facebook would quarrel it, several of that launched final week.

Now Zuckerberg is assenting his group for holding a emanate “super seriously,” displaying a correct march improvement that could lead Facebook to use a full border of a energy to quarrel disinformation.

Here’s a twin of a shred of today’s Facebook Live promote where Zuckerberg discussed feign news (emphasis mine):

If we demeanour opposite a universe it’s been a unequivocally tough year. There’s only been a lot of change, regardless of that side of it you’re on. If you’re pulling a new transformation and that succeeded in a domestic movements in a US or in Europe or in collection of Asia, even if we were on a side of that that was pulling for that, this is large change and that’s an critical thing for a world.

And we consider that, we know, when we consider about what Facebook is doing in perplexing to give people a voice, one of a things that we are spending a lot of time reflecting on this year and we consider going brazen is that we have a large shortcoming to make certain that these collection are used to emanate a many advantage for people around a world. And, we know, Facebook is a new kind of platform. It’s not a normal record company. It’s not a normal media company. You know, we build record and we feel obliged for how it’s used. We don’t write a news that people review on a platform. But during a same time we also know that we do a lot some-more than only discharge news, and we’re an critical partial of a open discourse.

And reflecting on 2016, this is only something that I’m unapproachable that people in this association take so seriously, since we know that people in a community…you know we’re only a tiny partial of a amicable fabric around a universe though we are a partial of that and do have a large shortcoming to get that right and keep on doing improved and improved work for people around a world. we know that people here take that super seriously.