The Climate Denial Is Coming From Inside Facebook's House - 2021-10-26
In the midst of the hottest October in human history, a question popped up on an internal Facebook message board. "Policy for Misinformation - Climate Change Denial?"
The question sparked a discussion, including with an employee arguing that Facebook allowing climate denial posts to run unchecked on the platform made sense because the science around a specific type of ulcer once shifted. The post, available h ere, is part of a tranche of documents released by whistleblower Francis Haugen's legal team that Gizmodo and other outlets have received access to. (You can see what we've turned up so far.) The names of "low-level" Facebook employees are redacted, so it's unclear who specifically engaged in the debate over climate change denial content. But the chats are illuminating in just how hands-off Facebook has been with climate denial, and how even within a company committed to net zero emissions by 2030, a laissez-faire attitude about perpetuating denial still reigns in some corners.
The internal logs are from 2019, a year before Facebook opened its climate science information center page for business. The initial post features an employee asking what Facebook does to deal with misinformation: