The FBI is facing backlash for trying to defend itself from the allegation that it’d pressured Facebook into censoring reporting on Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop.
As previously reported, last week Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed that the FBI had come to him before the 2020 presidential election to warn him about the spread of alleged Russian disinformation.
“[T]he FBI basically came to us, some folks on our team. They were like, hey, just so you know, you should be on high alert. We thought there was a lot of Russian propaganda in the 2016 election. We have it on notice that basically there’s about to be some kind of dump that’s similar to that, so just be vigilant,” he told podcaster Joe Rogan.
This bombshell revelation triggered massive backlash, with critics accusing the FBI of having pressured Facebook into censoring reporting on Biden’s infamous laptop, which as you know was initially dismissed as “Russian disinformation.”
Tucker breaks down how the FBI is ‘actively working on behalf of the Democratic Party’ https://t.co/ZxlABjofgF pic.twitter.com/2YPjsziky9
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) August 27, 2022
But in a statement issued to NBC News on Friday, the FBI sought to defend its behavior by claiming precedence.
“The FBI routinely notifies U.S. private sector entities, including social media providers, of potential threat information, so that they can decide how to better defend against threats,” the agency said.
The FBI added that all it’s done is provide companies with “foreign threat indicators” and that it ostensibly lacks the power to “ask or direct companies to take action on information received.”
Critics were not impressed by this argument given that Facebook did ultimately choose to censor reporting on Hunter Biden’s laptop by “reducing its distribution,” as Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone had said at the time.
So did other social media networks like Twitter, which outright banned the story. In fact, the entire left-wing media establishment joined the effort.
Notifies, like telling Social Media sites what to suppress during an election? Some would call this election interference.
— CingRed (@Putinontheritts) August 27, 2022
Nothing to see here. Just a government agency telling social media what is “true” and what isn’t. What could go wrong???
— kevincrull (@kevincrull) August 27, 2022
The potential threat of a factual news story that implicates one of the two Presidential candidates mere weeks before the election?
— AdamInHTownTX (Not a Biologist) (@AdamInHTownTX) August 27, 2022
Plus, it’s known that the FBI had already been in possession of the laptop itself when the news of it first emerged, meaning the agency knew it was real.
As also previously reported, in April of 2019, someone showed up to a computer repair shop in Delaware and dropped off a laptop that contained photos and videos of then-Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden’s son, Hunter. The owner of the shop then handed the laptop to the FBI.
However, he also gave a copy of its hard drive to President Donald Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani. After the FBI did nothing about the laptop, Giuliani went public with it in October of 2020 via the New York Post.
As soon as the story went public, the entire left-wing establishment sought to shut it down — and wouldn’t you know it, the FBI seemingly went along with the narrative, despite the agency having clearly known that the laptop was real.
Then the FBI routinely lies to justify an end because they had that laptop since 2019 and knew the truth.
— PardonMyFrench (@1PardonMyFrench) August 27, 2022
Ok, so the FBI is sitting on a piece of evidence/information they know to be true but warn the social media platforms in order to censor any mention. Is that also “routine?” Let’s hope not.
— Thomas Kingkade (@ThomasKingkade) August 27, 2022
Maybe they should have ‘routinely notified’ them that they were in possession of the laptop for over a year and that was NOT Russian disinformation.
FBI corruption under Christopher Wray is way beyond repair at this point.
— Joe Tone (@joebinsrca) August 27, 2022
That being said, Facebook has come to the FBI’s defense.
“The FBI shared general warnings about foreign interference – nothing specific about Hunter Biden,” Meta, its parent company, claimed in a tweet posted Friday.
As we’ve said, nothing about the Hunter Biden laptop story is new. Below is what Mark told Sen. Johnson in Oct 2020 and what Mark told Joe Rogan this week. The FBI shared general warnings about foreign interference – nothing specific about Hunter Biden. https://t.co/pHtzvh6r0r
— Meta Newsroom (@MetaNewsroom) August 26, 2022
But critics again pushed back, this time by pointing out how the FBI has never once issued such warnings in the face of anti-Trump disinformation like the Russian collusion delusion hoax, the Russian bounties story, etc.
“So FB just happened to choose this story about Hunter’s laptop as ‘Russian disinformation’ but not any of the multitude of stories about Trump & his family being Russian assets, or having ‘ties to the Kremlin??’ When censorship only goes 1 way, you are not protecting the public,” one critic astutely noted.
So FB just happened to choose this story about Hunter’s laptop as “Russian disinformation” but not any of the multitude of stories about Trump & his family being Russian assets, or having “ties to the Kremlin??” When censorship only goes 1 way, you are not protecting the public.
— CopeLowery (@CLowrey70) August 27, 2022
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