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Surgeon General Vivek Murthy said Sunday that COVID-19 vaccine misinformation is "aided and abetted" by social media platforms, further reinforcing the Biden administration's position.

Why it matters: Facebook and the White House have been engaging in an ongoing back-and-forth that was amplified Friday when President Biden said that social media platforms are "killing people" by allowing vaccine misinformation on their sites.

  • "[T]he only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated, and that’s — they’re killing people," the president said on Friday.
  • Facebook released a statement disputing the president's remarks, saying the accusations were "not supported by the facts." The social media giant doubled-down on Saturday with an additional statement saying, in part: "'We have been doing our part."

The big picture: The Biden administration has recently increased its attacks on Facebook, and the company has been under fire for COVID-related misinformation for months.

What he's saying: "This is about the health of Americans and the reality is that misinformation is still spreading like wildfire in our country, aided and abetted by technology platforms," Murthy said on "Fox News Sunday."

  • “I'm asking these companies to step up and take responsibility for what's happening on their side. I'm asking them to look out for the people across this country who — whose lives depend on having access to accurate information," he added.

Go deeper: Facebook contests Biden's misinformation claim

Go deeper

Live list: The "Facebook Papers" arrive

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Reports based on leaked whistleblower documents from Facebook, known as the Facebook Papers, appeared in a broad range of news outlets Monday, shedding light on what company knew about harms caused on its platform and how it handled that information.

Why it matters: The reports paint a detailed picture of Facebook's efforts over the years to grapple with major problems — from hate speech to inciting violence — while continuing to pursue its business objectives.

Jan. 6 committee examining Capitol riot financing, Facebook's role

Bennie Thompson. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), chairman of the Jan. 6 select committee, told CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday that the committee is "working with" Facebook to obtain requested information and that it is examining the financing that went into the Capitol riot.

Why it matters: In August, the committee issued record requests from social media companies, including Facebook, regarding the lead-up and day of the insurrection. Thompson said the committee is in the process of negotiating with Facebook and other platforms for certain information.

Facebook's pivotal week

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

They're battening down the hatches at Facebook headquarters this week as the company faces a trifecta of tumult: a continuing wave of negative press coverage fueled by document leaks, a critical earnings report Monday and a reported name change looming.

The big picture: All this is unfolding as Mark Zuckerberg tries to transform Facebook from a social network into the prime mover behind a new "metaverse" of VR- and AR-driven remote work and play.