November 16, 2020
SumOfUs Launches Effort to Push Social Media Platforms to Address Algorithm Deficiencies that Encourage Disinformation
NEW YORK- Today, SumOfUs, a global consumer advocacy organization and online community with nearly 17 million members worldwide, announced their campaign to take on a key component of disinformation online. The group has secured more than 51,000 online campaign supporters demanding that tech giants like Google, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter rework their algorithms so they stop pushing users to extreme content that is littered with hate speech and lies.
These tech companies’ actions are responsible for one of the most effective ways bad actors have been spreading election disinformation during the 2020 presidential election. Consider these facts:
- Four of the top 10 most shared websites on Twitter about the 2020 election promoted unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud or sought to document voter fraud, according to SitRep 6 ADI Election Situation Report (11/6/2020).
- More than 115 million U.S. online users per month visit the top five websites that carry the most election disinformation, with over 13 million of those monthly visitors viewing content backed by the Russian government according to GDI Primer: The U.S. (Dis)Information Ecosystem (10/2020).
“This dumpster fire of viral hate and misinformation was caused by Facebook, Twitter and Google and their users are furious.” said Emma Ruby-Sachs, executive director of SumOfUs. “The time for small actions is over, we need real change to the algorithms now, and the movement to force that change is growing with lightning speed.”
SumOfUs has been relentless in putting pressure on the major social media platforms to fight against disinformation rather than be complicit in its spread. Several are finally starting to take steps to improve: Facebook reduced the reach of pages and groups spreading election disinformation, and Twitter labeled several of Trump's tweets as containing potential harmful or misleading content – but much more needs to be done.
To sign the online petition visit this link.
SumOfUS is an advocacy nonprofit organization and online community with nearly 17 million members worldwide. We combine and amplify consumers’ voices to make sure regulators and corporations around the world hear them. Together, our community of millions act as a global consumer watchdog – running and winning campaigns to hold the biggest companies in the world accountable. More information can be found at www.SumOfUs.org