The News Media Alliance today sent a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg strongly opposing its plan to label quality news as political advocacy beginning Tuesday, May 22. View the letter here.
Statement from David Chavern, President & CEO, News Media Alliance:
Facebook’s plan to group quality publishers alongside political advocacy, which its ad archive will do, is a fundamental mischaracterization of journalism.
Newsgathering and reporting about politics is not the same thing as advocacy or politics. By lumping journalism and issue advocacy together, Facebook is dangerously blurring the line between real reporting and propaganda, and threatening to undermine journalism’s ability to play its critical role in society as the fourth estate.
We call upon Facebook to reconsider its treatment of news in its plan and instead require disclosure from all advertisers on all advertising; exempt news in the ad archiving and labeling process for political content; or label and archive news independently from politics and advocacy.
We understand and support Facebook’s desire to create more transparency for the end user and would welcome the opportunity to participate in any process to improve the current standards.
David Chavern is former President & CEO of the News/Media Alliance. Chavern has 30 years of experience in executive strategic and operational roles. Prior to the Alliance, he completed a decade-long tenure at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.