Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s second day of testimony, this time, in front of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, was political theater at its best — and worst.
Lawmakers hit the founder of the world’s most popular social media platform with interrogative, detailed and sometimes outright bizarre questions as the billionaire defended his site after the controversial data firm Cambridge Analytica harvested personal data from 87 million accounts.
On several occasions, Diamond and Silk — frequent Fox News guests and YouTube personalities — were brought up by Republicans, who questioned why the pair’s videos were reportedly flagged on Facebook as “unsafe to the community” last week. No one conveyed their anger and frustration over Diamond and Silk’s dilemma in a more unique fashion than Rep. Billy Long (R—MO).
Billy Long has brought out a poster of Diamond and Silk and is reading a question they sent to him to ask Zuckerberg! pic.twitter.com/svEDtWbVkT
— Joe Perticone (@JoePerticone) April 11, 2018
The Republican lawmaker brought out an enormous poster featuring the two conservative bloggers smiling toward the camera. “You recognize these folks?” he asked.
“I do,” Zuckerberg replied. “I believe — is that Diamond and Silk?”
“That is Diamond and Silk, two biological sisters from North Carolina who I’d like to point out are African American, and they’re content was deemed by your folks to be unsafe,” Rep. Long said. “Diamond and Silk have a question for you, and that question is: what is unsafe about two black women supporting President Donald J. Trump?”
Zuckerberg appeared unaware over the vloggers having their content flagged on his platform, telling the Congressman “nothing is unsafe” about black women supporting Trump, but that he was unaware of “the specifics of this particular situation.”
“I would suggest that, as good as you are with analytics,” Rep. Long said, “use some analytical research and see how many conservatives have been pulled out, and how many have been liberal.”
Meanwhile, a Facebook spokesperson told Fox News on Tuesday that Diamond and Silk received an “inaccurate” message regarding and the company was reconsidering its labeling of their content.
“We have communicated directly with Diamond And Silk about this issue,” the spokesperson said. “We have provided them with more information about our policies and the tools that are applicable to their Page and look forward to the opportunity to speak with them.”
Other lawmakers called out Zuckerberg over the new labeling of the viral pair, including Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R—TN) who said plainly, “Let me tell you something right now: Diamond and Silk is not terrorism.”
Watch a clip of the exchange above, via C-SPAN.
[image via screengrab]
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