Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced that the social media giant is scrapping its spiraling censorship policies as he vows to “stand up for free expression.”
Zuckerberg made the surprising promise during a fiery speech at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit in Utah on Friday.
Zuckerberg told the audience that he now believes Facebook has been bullied into partaking in “excessive censorship” – likely from corporate media giants and left-wing activist journalists.
Instead of kowtowing to the far-left mob, Zuckerberg says Facebook will now start allowing people to “post what they want” in spite of the fact it will “p*ss off a lot of people.”
Dailymail.co.uk reports: ‘Increasingly we’re getting called to censor a lot of different kinds of content that makes me really uncomfortable,’ he claimed.
‘We’re going to take down the content that’s really harmful, but the line needs to be held at some point’.
The Facebook founder went on to bemoan: ‘It kind of feels like the list of things that you’re not allowed to say socially keeps on growing, and I’m not really okay with that’.
He then declared: ‘This is the new approach [free expression], and I think it’s going to p**s off a lot of people. But frankly the old approach was p**sing off a lot of people too, so let’s try something different’.
KSL 5 TV shared the entirety of Zuckerberg’s speech on its own Facebook page.
Zuckerberg has been in the hot seat in recent months for refusing to ban political ads from Facebook – despite the fact fellow social media giant Twitter declared that they would stop sharing political advertisements.
The tech guru has also stated that Facebook will not fact-check political ads, resulting in a highly publicized showdown on Capitol Hill with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Meanwhile, Zuckerberg’s defiant appearance at the Utah tech summit came after Facebook disappointed Wall Street’s expectations of fourth quarter growth earlier this week.
The results, revealed on Wednesday, raised concerns that Facebook’s days of astronomical growth were firmly in the rearview mirror, and shares of the world’s biggest social network dropped 7.2 per cent in extended trading.
Facebook reported its slowest-ever revenue growth for the fourth quarter, at 25 per cent.
Elsewhere on Wednesday, the company pledged better protections for Facebook users after the social media giant agreed to pay a $550 million settlement Wednesday over a lawsuit that claimed it illegally collected millions of users’ biometric data without their consent.
Facebook did not admit wrongdoing in agreeing to the settlement, which requires court approval.
Zuckerberg has promised Facebook users privacy upgrades in light of the outcome of the suit, as the founder seeks to address the ongoing privacy concerns that have dogged the social media company