Mark Zuckerberg Rejects 'Crazy Idea' That Fake News on Facebook Swayed Voters

Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer of Facebook Inc., at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, on Monday, Feb. 22, 2016.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says the idea that Facebook influenced the outcome of the U.S. election is a "crazy idea." During an interview Thursday with "The Facebook Effect" author David Kirkpatrick, Zuckerberg responded to criticisms that Facebook helped spread misinformation by allowing for the sharing and re-sharing of fake news stories.

"I think the idea that fake news on Facebook -- of which it’s a very small amount of the content -- influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea," he said, adding, "there have been hoaxes on the internet before… We do our best to make it so that people can report that, and as I said before, we can show people the most meaningful content we can."

Zuckerberg says the idea that people voted the way they did because they saw a fake news story shows a lack of understanding for people who voted for Donald Trump.

"Part of what I think is going on here is people are trying to understand the results of the election," Zuckerberg said. "I think there is a certain profound lack of empathy in asserting that the only reason why someone could have voted the way they did is because they saw some fake news."


The Biz premium subscriber content has moved to

To simplify subscriber access, we have temporarily disabled the password requirement.