In a recent article published in the New York Times, billionaire financier George Soros went all-out against Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook’s political influence.
In the latest installment of the to-and-fro between Soros and Zuckerberg, Soros’s latest article – which was prompted by this year’s U.S. presidential elections – saw the billionaire again demanding that Facebook be rid of Zuckerberg’s control.
“I repeat and reaffirm my accusation against Facebook under the leadership of Mr. Zuckerberg and Ms. Sandberg. They follow only one guiding principle: maximize profits irrespective of the consequences. One way or another, they should not be left in control of Facebook,” Soros wrote.
He argues that Zuckerberg should be removed because he claims that Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election due to social media and and its “failure” to ban political advertising.
The push to remove Zuckerberg comes following Twitter’s decision to stop running political advertising in what many saw as an assault on free speech.
“I believe that Mr. Trump and Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, realize that their interests are aligned — the president’s in winning elections, Mr. Zuckerberg’s in making money,” Soros wrote.
Naturally, the biggest loser of the last election, Hillary Clinton, expressed her vehement approval, claiming that Facebook was interested in nothing less than a Trump victory.
Nothing surprising in that knowing how Soros helped financed and support the Clinton campaign. It seems the Democrats must be mighty scared of the prospect of a second Trump victory, even going out against Zuckerberg who is, after all, one of their own.
As for how Facebook filters its content and differentiates between conservative and liberal posters, we here in Hungary are well aware of how it is done. But can and should this censorship be taken to a new level? Mr. Soros seems to think so.
The implications for democracy and free speech are enormous.
Title image: George Soros (AFP/Fabrice Coffrini)