Internal Facebook communications recently obtained by the House Judiciary Committee show that the social media company censored Covid-19 content due to pressure from the Biden administration.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the emails obtained by the House Judiciary Committee include discussions between Facebook executives regarding how they censored social media users, particularly with regard to the origin of the Covid-19 pandemic and Covid-19 vaccine content.
In an email from July 2021 to his fellow colleagues, Nick Clegg, Facebook’s president of global affairs, asked, “Can someone quickly remind me why we were removing—rather than demoting/labeling—claims that Covid is man made?”
In response to Clegg’s email, a Facebook vice president of content policy said, “We were under pressure from the administration and others to do more. We shouldn’t have done it.”
According to The Wall Street Journal, the email exchange released by the House Judiciary Committee occurred about three months after the social media company stopped banning users from posting that Covid-19 was manufactured or man-made.
Another email from a Facebook vice president stated, “The WH has previously indicated that it thinks humor should be removed if it is premised on the vaccine having side effects, so we expect it would similarly want to see humor about vaccine hesitancy removed.”
Clegg responded, saying, “I can’t see Mark in a million years being comfortable with removing that—and I wouldn’t recommend it.”
The Biden administration has claimed that its communication with Facebook was intended to promote public health and the implementation of the vaccines during the Covid-19 pandemic.
During Thursday’s press briefing, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pieere said, “We have consistently made it clear that we believe social-media companies have a critical responsibility to take account of the effects of their platforms that they have on the American people, while making independent decisions about the content of their platforms.”
The House Judiciary Committee has been investigating the Biden administration’s alleged attempts to censor the free speech of the American people on social media, particularly with regard to content such as Covid-19.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the chairman of the committee, stated, “These documents begin to reveal the pressure that Facebook and other social-media companies were under to alter their content-moderation policies and remove protected speech to appease the federal government, particularly the Biden White House.”
Jordan described the Facebook emails as “jarring,” adding that the recently disclosed documents are “just the beginning of the story.” Jordan shared that the committee anticipates that Facebook will “continue to produce documents,” noting that the House Judiciary Committee could hold Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg for contempt of Congress if the company. does not produce all of the requested documents pertaining to Facebook’s collaboration with the Biden administration.