Facebook has a climate-denial problem

Facebook has a climate-denial problem, by Lisa Hymas.

Facebook, well-known as a breeding ground for misinformation, has a particular problem with disseminating false and misleading messages about climate change science. The platform spreads climate-denying videos and other posts, hosts climate-denying ads, and officially partners with climate-denying media outlets and organizations.

A recent video promoting false arguments against climate change science got more than 5 million views on Facebook, The Guardian’s Dana Nuccitelli reported last week.

The video — posted in June by The Daily Signal, an arm of the right-wing Heritage Foundation — is titled “Why Climate Change Is Fake News.” It features Marc Morano, a longtime spokesperson and blogger for the climate-denial cause, who outlines three things that “the left gets wrong about climate change.” Nuccitelli points out that all three are common and easily debunked myths. …

In an interview with Recode published on July 18, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that Facebook shouldn’t remove content just because it’s wrong. Using the example of Holocaust denial, he said it’s “deeply offensive,” but “I don’t believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong. I don’t think that they’re intentionally getting it wrong.”

Zuckerberg tried to clarify his views two days later, writing, “Our goal with fake news is not to prevent anyone from saying something untrue — but to stop fake news and misinformation spreading across our services. If something is spreading and is rated false by fact checkers, it would lose the vast majority of its distribution in News Feed.”

Joe Romm at ThinkProgress pointed out that Zuckerberg’s approach is a major problem when it comes to climate denial, a particularly pernicious form of disinformation.

So say the warmists. Where would the carbon dioxide theory of global warming be without government and media support? It is a triumph of PR, but it is not following the rules of science. There is ample empirical evidence that the theory is wrong or very exaggerated. The physics is fine, but as it happens there is a subtle modeling error in all the climate models and the theory arose because of that error — book soon.