Andrew Korybko — Sputnik News Aug 4, 2018
Facebook’s stock fell over 20% following reports of less-than-expected earnings after the company has struggled to fight fake news, censorship accusations, and the flight of some of its users.
The over $120 billion that the company lost infamously makes it the largest loss in stock market history, and CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg reportedly had over $17 billion wiped out. The shock set in immediately, with pundits and regular users alike wondering just how far Facebook will fall and whether the platform’s best days are now behind it, and some even went as far as speculating that it’ll soon become the “next MySpace” and end up all but irrelevant.
From being indirectly implicated in the Russiagate conspiracy for supposedly allowing fake news to be peddled on its platform to being exposed earlier this year for allowing Cambridge Analytica to harvest its users’ data for political purposes, it’s fair to say that Facebook has been in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons over the past couple of years. On top of that, some politically active users who defy Mainstream Media dogma have alleged that they’re being “shadow blocked”, meaning that the algorithm is suppressing their account’s so-called “organic reach”, or sometimes outright censored through frivolous blocking. In turn, these people and their friends have migrated away from Facebook and to competitors like VKontakte.
This wouldn’t ordinarily be a problem for Facebook had it not been for the successful awareness campaign that Alt-Media has conducted in drawing attention to the company’s liberal bias, incidentally helped along by several high-profile scandals against conservatives and highlighted by Breitbart, among others. Facebook generates most of its revenue from selling ads, so any speculation about its suspected suppression of certain categories of accounts for political purposes would obviously impact on its earnings. Additionally, the measures that the company is taking to fight fake news and prevent third parties from tricking users into voluntarily giving up their data like Cambridge Analytica did are thought to negatively affect its business model.
At this point, there’s no denying that Facebook is in the throes of its largest-ever crisis and that Zuckerberg’s leadership over his brainchild is increasingly in doubt as proverbial pitchfork-wielding shareholders demand his resignation, though it remains to be seen whether the company can weather what might at this point be an existential crisis or if it’ll go the way of MySpace in the coming years.
Andrew Korybko is joined by Patrick Henningsen, Executive Editor of the news and analysis website, 21stCenturyWire.com, and Joaquin Flores, Chief Editor of Fort Russ News and Director of the Center for Syncretic Studies,