Aug 29, 2018 - Technology

Poll: Most conservatives think social media is censoring them

An illustration of "Censored" over the Facebook app

Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

65% of "self-described conservatives" believe that social media companies like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are purposely censoring conservatives and conservative ideas from their sites, according to a new Media Research Center/McLaughlin & Associates poll that Axios obtained first.

Why it matters: The right has been alleging for years that Big Tech companies are intentionally and systematically biased against them, but their criticisms have gotten substantially louder and have received heightened attention since President Trump took office — so much so that the Trump administration itself said it's considering trying to regulate the industry.

Reality check: Despite the growing backlash from the right, claims of systemic or coordinated bias against conservatives on social media platforms remain largely unproven. Facebook referrals for many political and news sources have dropped across the ideological spectrum thanks to changes in the News Feed algorithm.

By the numbers:

The following findings are from those who responded to the survey as "self-described conservatives":

  • 65% said they believe social media companies like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are intentionally censoring conservatives and conservative ideas from their sites.
  • 66% said they do not trust Facebook to treat all of its users equally regardless of their political beliefs.
  • 67% said they have less trust in Facebook than they did one year ago.

Methodology: The survey, conducted by the conservative Media Research Center and Republican pollster McLaughlin & Associates, polled 1,000 likely general election voters nationwide from August 22-27, and 351 of those surveyed described themselves as conservatives. The margin of error is +/- 3.1%.

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