George Soros and Facebook, Soros using Facebook's new rules to bias what news people read

Because of misleading news coverage, a lot of Americans apparently already believe that "fake" news is a big problem (survey available here).  Here is some background on the changes in how Facebook will protect people from "fake" news.
Facebook has announced its plan to tackle fake news by harnessing fact checking and, potentially, making disputed stories appear lower in users’ News Feeds. . . . 
The social network announced Thursday that it will make it easier for users to report fake news when they see it, which they can do by clicking the upper right hand corner of a post. If enough people report a story as fake, Facebook will pass it to third-party fact-checking organizations that are part of the nonprofit Poynter Institute's International Fact-Checking Network. 
Five fact-checking and news organizations are working with the company on this: ABC News, The Associated Press, FactCheck.org, Politifact and Snopes. Facebook says this group is likely to expand. . . .
For information on why this is a problem using these fact checkers see this article available here.

 But the problem gets even worse.  Enter George Soros who will be funding an organization to flag stories that he believes to be false and also to fund fact checking.
The International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) drafted a code of five principles for news websites to accept, and Facebook yesterday announced it will work with “third-party fact checking organizations” that are signatories to the code of principles.. . 
IFCN is hosted by the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. A cursory search of the Poynter Institute website finds that Poynter’s IFCN is openly funded by Soros’ Open Society Foundations as well as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Google, and the National Endowment for Democracy. 
Poynter’s IFCN is also funded by the Omidyar Network, which is the nonprofit for liberal billionaire eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. The Omidyar Network has partnered with the Open Society on numerous projects and it has given grants to third parties using the Soros-funded Tides Foundation.  Tides is one of the largest donors to left-wing causes in the U.S. 
Another significant Poynter Institute donor is the Craig Newmark Foundation, the charitable organization established by Craigslist Founder Craig Newmark. On Monday, just days before the announcement of the Facebook partnership, Poynter issued a press release revealing that Newmark donated $1 million to the group to fund a faculty chair in journalism ethics. . . . .
and from the UK Daily Mail:
Billionaire Clinton donor George Soros is among a line-up of wealthy liberal figures who will fund Facebook's fake news fact checker.  
The 86-year-old Hungarian financier's Open Society Foundation is listed among organizations which are backing The International Fact Checking Network, the body tasked with flagging bogus news stories to social media users, on its website. 
Soros, a staunch Democrat who tried to block George W. Bush's campaign in 2004, has given $25million to Clinton and causes dear to her.  
Other donors involved in the new fact checking feature include eBay founder Pierre Omidyar who has committed more than $30million to the Clintons and their charities. Google, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Endowment for Democracy are also funding the pilot.   
The line-up feeds criticism from right-wing commentators that the new fact checking feature will be biased towards left-wing causes and could interfere with the social media feeds of millions of voters. . . .

Labels: , ,


If you think that the Russians interfered with the US election, you might reread the Washington Post piece that started this discussion

UPDATE:  Do you want more evidence that the claim that Russia interfered with the US election was political.  From Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y.:
"Somebody has the time to leak it to the Washington Post and the New York Times, but they don’t have the time to come to Congress," said King, a member of the committee. "It’s their job to come. They don’t have any choice. They have to come in, especially when they have created this." 
King added that lawmakers have not received any assessment from the CIA that Russia interfered to help Trump win the presidency over Hillary Clinton, allegations that were first reported by the Washington Post Friday.

ORIGINAL POST: It isn't obvious that the people who are claiming that the Russians interfered with the US election actually read the Washington Post article that this claim is based on:
intelligence agencies do not have specific intelligence showing officials in the Kremlin “directing” the identified individuals to pass the Democratic emails to WikiLeaks, a second senior U.S. official said. Those actors, according to the official, were “one step” removed from the Russian government, rather than government employees. Moscow has in the past used middlemen to participate in sensitive intelligence operations so it has plausible deniability.
Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, has said in a television interview that the “Russian government is not the source.” . . .
More on Julian Assange's continued statements that the emails were not obtained from the Russians.  
"As Julian Assange has made crystal clear, the leaks did not come from the Russians. As I have explained countless times, they are not hacks, they are insider leaks – there is a major difference between the two,” he wrote. “And it should be said again and again, that if Hillary Clinton had not connived with the DNC to fix the primary schedule to disadvantage Bernie, if she had not received advance notice of live debate questions to use against Bernie, if she had not accepted massive donations to the Clinton foundation and family members in return for foreign policy influence, if she had not failed to distance herself from some very weird and troubling people, then none of this would have happened.” . . .
Has Wikileaks ever been found to provide false information? No.  So the questions is why these statements aren't given more weight in the press.  Most of the media accounts just completely ignore Julian Assange's clear statements.

A transcript from Sunday's Meet the Press is also quite useful.
CHUCK TODD: Let me move to the reports that both The Washington Post, New York Times, NBC News has confirmed it, that the assessment from the C.I.A. is not only that Russia interfere -- make an attempt to interfere on the 2016 election to be disruptive, but they actually were trying to be disruptive in order to help Donald Trump. And the transition put out a statement that essentially humiliated the C.I.A. in saying that Donald Trump didn't believe the assessment from the C.I.A. because these are the same people that said that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Does Donald Trump have confidence in America's intelligence?  
REINCE PRIEBUS: Of course he has confidence in America's intelligence. But we don't have confidence in The New York Times releasing a report of unnamed sources of some kind of study that itself, and The Washington Post said was inconclusive to claim that, because the C.I.A. had hacked e-mails of the D.N.C. and the R.N.C. and only used D.N.C. e-mails, that meant that Russia was trying to influence the election. Because the other piece of this, Chuck, is that the R.N.C. was absolutely not hacked, number one. We had the F.B.I. in the R.N.C.. We've been working with the F.B.I.--  
REINCE PRIEBUS: We had intelligence experts here.  
CHUCK TODD: Let me ask you.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: No, no, no, hang on, Chuck. No.  
CHUCK TODD: No. REINCE PRIEBUS: The-- the R.N.C. was --  
CHUCK TODD: Explain why you had the F.B.I there --  
REINCE PRIEBUS: --not hacked.  
CHUCK TODD: Well then, why was the--  
CHUCK TODD: -- F.B.I. involved?  
REINCE PRIEBUS: It's really simple. Well, it's really simple. Because when the D.N.C. was hacked, we called the F.B.I. and they came in to help us. And they came in to review what we were doing and went through our systems, went through every single thing that we did.  
CHUCK TODD: Right.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: We went through this for a month.  
CHUCK TODD: I understand that.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: And we were not hacked. So wait a second. If we were not hacked, and that is absolutely not true, then where does that story lie?  
CHUCK TODD: So nobody with the--  
REINCE PRIEBUS: The story is--  
HUCK TODD: Let me ask you this, Reince.  
CHUCK TODD: Not a single person connected to the R.N.C. was hacked? No Republican vendor who had interactions with the R.N.C. network was hacked? You guys have had a specific denial that the R.N.C.'s network wasn't hacked. That doesn't mean Republicans associated with the R.N.C. weren't hacked. That doesn't rule that out. Do you categorically--  
REINCE PRIEBUS: Okay, first of all--  
CHUCK TODD: --rule all that out?  
REINCE PRIEBUS: Number one-- I don't know why you're so hot about this. I mean the fact of the matter is you should actually--  
CHUCK TODD: It's not about me.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: --be happy that the R.N.C. wasn't hacked.  
CHUCK TODD: Well, no. I'm--  
REINCE PRIEBUS: The R.N.C. was not hacked, Chuck.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: Number one, the R.N.C. was not hacked. I don't know of any employee, on any of their own Gmail accounts, that was hacked. So what I'm trying to tell you is the R.N.C. was not hacked, number one. And by the way, that was the specific allegation that was made in the actual New York Times article.  
CHUCK TODD: Right.  
REINCE PRIEBUS: The article didn't say, "Affiliates of the R.N.C.."  
REINCE PRIEBUS: The article didn't say, "Employee." No, wait a second, Chuck. The article said, "The R.N.C. was hacked." So don't be defensive with me that--