When Facebook released its first copy of quarterly report about the most viewed posts in the United States this week, Its integrity vice president, Guy Rosen, said the social network had taken “a long journey” to become “the most transparent platform the Internet has; ever seen.” The list showed that the posts with the most reach are intuitive content like recipes and cute animals.
In that report, a copy was provided to the Times, and the most-viewed link was a news article.
Whose headline was suggesting that the coronavirus was at fault for the death of a Florida doctor? The report also featured a Facebook page for The Epoch Times, an anti-China newspaper that spread right-wing conspiracy theories. It was the 19th most viewed page on the platform for the first three months of 2021.
According to the internal email, the report was about to be released publicly when some executives, including Alex Schultz, Facebook’s vice president of analytics and chief marketing officer, debated whether this would cause a public relations problem. The company has elected to put it on hold.
Facebook spokesman Andy Stone said, “We earlier thought making the report public. Since we knew it would draw attention, as we saw this week, there were enhancements to the system that we wanted to build.”