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07th Nov 2019

Facebook described as ‘toxic’ by Eamon Ryan at fake news and disinformation hearing

Rudi Kinsella

Facebook legal case

No punches pulled from the Green Party leader here.

Law makers from nine different countries gathered in Leinster House on Thursday evening for the third meeting of the International Grand Committee (IGC) on Disinformation and ‘Fake News’.

The ICG – which is an international gathering of politicians, who meet to discuss the behaviour and regulation of social media platforms – met at 9am on Thursday morning, with special attention being paid to the subject of ‘Fake News’.

Speaking about Facebook, Green Party Leader Eamon Ryan said the social network is the most “toxic political platform.”

According to RTÉ, Ryan said: “Facebook is probably the most toxic political platform. I’d invite you to visit my own Facebook page and see the nature of the commentary that is increasingly prevalent on the platform. It’s not a community, it’s war.”

“It is the business model, not just in relation to political advertising, but the whole organic commentary model is leading to political discourse that is not community – it is hate speech and abuse. That is the experience of every politician I have met. Are we all wrong?”

The goal of the meeting is to agree a set of principles to underpin international collaboration in tackling issues relation to social media “while at the same time respecting freedom of speech.”

More information on Thursday’s meeting can be found here.

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