A new CNN poll conducted last week revealed that roughly three-quarters if U.S. adults feel Facebook is making American society worse. About half also said they know someone who was led to believe in a conspiracy theory due to content on the site.
The phone survey showed that 76 percent of Americans think Facebook makes society worse compared to just 11 percent who believe the opposite, and 13 percent responded that it has no effect either way.
The negative view of the social media site was consistent across gender, age, and racial categories. Even among frequent Facebook users, 70 percent said the network harms more than helps U.S. society. Despite a majority saying Facebook is worsening society, not as many think the site is at fault: 55 percent say the way people use Facebook is to blame while 45 percent believe the way Facebook is run is the problem.
Generally, many Americans show little faith in the good intentions of large technology companies, as 38 percent say they do not trust companies like Facebook, Amazon, or Google to do what is in their users’ best interest. That statistic reflects a 29 percent uptick from March 2019. Just 34 percent of Americans say they trust big tech corporations even somewhat, showing a downward turn from 40 percent two years ago.
In October, Facebook announced that its name would be changed to Meta following the release of the Facebook Papers. The Papers are a set of internal documents that expose the company’s culture, its tendency to propagate divisive content, and the difficulties it has faced in handling incidents of misinformation while allowing extremism to flourish on the network.
Frances Haugen was the whistleblower who released the information, and Haugen testified before the Senate, encouraging Congress to up regulation of the site. Currently, just over half of Americans say the federal government should increase its role in the regulation of the social media giant while 11 percent say the regulation should decrease.
ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: REDDIT
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