Apr 11, 2017

Left rising on Facebook

A majority of the most-engaged partisan Facebook pages are left-leaning or affiliated with Trump resistance movements, according to NewsWhip, a social analytics measurement company. The firm looked at the engagement (likes, comments, shares) of partisan pages in Trump's first full month as president. Even more telling is that most of the left-leaning pages are out-performing some of the most trafficked news competitors in overall engagement.

Why it matters: The same Facebook tactics used by conservatives to fuel an anti-establishment movement during the election are now being used by the left to fuel an anti-Trump movement.

Data: Newswhip; Chart: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

NewsWhip spokesman Liam Corcoran says general news sites don't always post about political news, which lowers their average, but when they do, the uptick in engagement is significant. CNN, for example, saw an increase of over 68% in Facebook engagement year over year due to a higher volume of politically-related posts.

Facebook is a good tool for observing the rise of political movements: And its role in activism will only grow bigger. New tools, like call-to-action buttons, fundraising buttons and buttons to contact elected officials, combined with traditional tools, like mass-event invitations, make it easy for political groups to form and spread on Facebook. For example, The Women's Marches that made national headlines all over the country in January were organized by one woman on Facebook and according to a University of Maryland study cited by CNN, 70% of people who attended the march in Washington heard about the event on Facebook.

Go deeper

Exclusive: Facebook adding part-time fact-checking contractors

Photo: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

Facebook is creating a new pilot program in the U.S. that will leverage part-time contracted "community reviewers" to expedite its fact-checking process.

The big picture: The community reviewers will help to corroborate or debunk stories that Facebook's machine learning tools flag as potential misinformation. This will make it easier for Facebook's fact-checking partners to quickly debunk false claims.

Go deeperArrowDec 17, 2019

Facebook won't stop letting politicians lie in ads

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Anyone who was waiting for Facebook to change its controversial political ad policies — particularly the one that allows politicians to lie with impunity — will have to keep waiting, the company made clear Thursday.

Driving the news: Facebook released a raft of small changes to its rules around political ads, including giving consumers the option to block political ads from their feeds.

Go deeperArrowJan 9, 2020

Facebook will make political ads optional for users

Photo: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

Facebook said Thursday it will give consumers the option to stop seeing political ads in their feeds moving forward.

Why it matters: Facebook has been heavily criticized for its policies around political ads, especially for its decision not to fact-check political ads.

Go deeperArrowJan 9, 2020