Facebook drags others into chaos by interfering in political manipulation in rich countries

The social media giant Facebook has been used by politicians in 25 countries to deceive society. However, it was claimed that the platform interfered with misinformation affecting rich countries, but left poor countries to their fate. Therefore, the company moved quickly to address political manipulations affecting countries such as the United States, Taiwan, South Korea, and Poland, although not in most of the events in Afghanistan, Iraq, Mongolia, Mexico, and Latin America.

It has been repeatedly claimed that Facebook allows world leaders and politicians to use its social media platform to deceive society.

The British newspaper The Guardian reported that Facebook was involved in more than 30 cases of political manipulation in 25 countries. The study shows that poor, small, and non-western countries allow mass exploitation to take precedence over offenses that are of interest to the social media giant or affect the United States and other rich countries.

According to the report, the company did not operate in Afghanistan, Iraq, Mongolia, Mexico and most of Latin America, but moved quickly to touch on political manipulations affecting countries such as the United States, Taiwan, South Korea and Poland.


The lawsuit came from a former Facebook employee. Speaking to The Guardian, Sophie Zhang, an informant, said: “There are a lot of problems that Facebook has not solved because they are not seen as a risk in terms of public relations. The whole world is paying for them instead of Facebook.” .

Facebook has vowed to crack down on misleading political sharing after the 2016 US election, when it was discovered that Russian agents were using fake Facebook accounts to deceive and divide American voters. However, the company has repeatedly failed to act in a timely manner when evidence of widespread manipulation and exploitation of vehicles by political leaders around the world has been presented.

Facebook fired Zhang in September 2020, citing poor performance. The young worker posted a 7,800-word farewell note on his last day, explaining that “foreign national governments have made very blatant attempts to mislead their citizens by abusing Facebook” and criticized the company for failing to address abuses.


On the other hand, Facebook spokeswoman Liz Bourgeois responded to Zhang’s allegations by saying, “We strongly disagree with Zhang’s explanation of our priorities and efforts to address the abuse on our platform. We pursue abuse all over the world, and we have expert teams focusing on this. As a result, we have eliminated more than 100 coordinated unrealistic behavioral networks. About half of these were local networks operating in various countries around the world, including Latin America, the Middle East, North Africa and the Asia-Pacific region. Fighting coordinated unrealistic behaviors is our priority. Dealing with both spam and fake interactions. We are investigating every issue before taking action or making public claims about them, ”he said.


Zhang had been working on Facebook for about six months when he realized that Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández had garnered a lot of fake likes on the content he sent to 500,000 followers on Facebook. In the six-week period from June to July 2018, Hernández’s Facebook posts garnered 59,100 likes, more than 78 percent of whom were not real people.

One was the administrator of hundreds of fake pages and the official pages of both Hernández and his sister, who is now the Minister of Communications. So a man standing behind a computer screen posted an article on the president’s Facebook page about how well Hernandez did his job, then using hundreds of fake pages to make the post look popular, and shared it with different communities.


In another example, in September 2018, Zhang warned a Facebook policy group that Mexican Oaxaca Governor Alejandro Murat Hinojosa had garnered a significant amount of fake likes.

However, no effort has been made to investigate the source of the fake news or to address the broader misinformation issue in Mexican politics. In August 2019, Zhang reported the situation to the authorities for suspicious account networks supporting local politicians in seven Mexican states.

On the other hand, even in Honduras and Mexico, the Facebook team was immediately alarmed for England. During the 2019 general elections in the UK, the public complained a lot about the waves of comments in support of Boris Johnson’s Facebook page. Zhang said the comments did not come from dubious “Russian bots” but from real Brexit supporters who deceived labor voters by posing as Russian accounts.


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