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Zuckerberg Clarifies Comments Defending Holocaust-Denying Posts On Facebook

(JTA) – Mark Zuckerberg clarified remarks he made in an interview published online in which he said that he would not automatically remove Holocaust-denying posts from Facebook.

The remark by Zuckerberg, the founder and chief executive of Facebook, said in an interview with tech journalist Kara Swisher that was published on the Recode website, was widely covered by journalists and debated on social media.

Hours after the interview went live on the Recode Decode podcast and a transcript was published on the website, Zuckerberg sent an email to Swisher to clear up any misconceptions.

“I enjoyed our conversation yesterday, but there’s one thing I want to clear up. I personally find Holocaust denial deeply offensive, and I absolutely didn’t intend to defend the intent of people who deny that,” Zuckerberg wrote.

“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. And of course if a post crossed line into advocating for violence or hate against a particular group, it would be removed,” he also wrote.

“These issues are very challenging but I believe that often the best way to fight offensive bad speech is with good speech,” Zuckerberg concluded.

During the interview, Zuckerberg said that while Facebook would not remove a post denying the Holocaust, it would push that post down the News Feed to make sure it doesn’t go viral.

Alyssa Fisher is a news writer at the Forward. Email her at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter at @alyssalfisher

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