While US congressional investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential elections continue to unfold, journalists are starting to piece together the decisive role of Facebook. The social media giant may inadvertently have helped Donald Trump to his surprise victory. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who initially dismissed suggestions that Facebook influenced the elections as “crazy,” has now acknowledged the platform’s role in spreading misinformation. But how could a social networking site turn into an engine of deception and propaganda? Writing for The Atlantic, reporter Alexis C. Madrigal traces Facebook’s rise as the dominant media distributor and its growing impact on electoral politics.
In this article, you will learn
- How Facebook became a dominant media distributor,
- Why the Facebook platform is well suited to the dissemination of misinformation and
- How Russia could influence voters while remaining undetected.
About the Author