Facebook Warns Whistleblower on “60 Minutes” Will Claim He Contributed to the Capitol Riots

A Facebook executive said in a defiant internal memo that a former employee will accuse the company of contributing to the… Riots in the US Capitol, the New York Times reported for the first time on Saturday.

Why it matters: Facebook appears to be launching a pre-emptive strike against the whistleblower ahead of a CBS “60 Minutes” interview broadcast on Sunday and her scheduled performance on a hearing in the Senate on Tuesday.

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  • She will accuse the tech giant on “60 Minutes” of contributing to polarization in the US, according to Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs, in the memo obtained by the NYT.

  • Clegg says the program “suggests that the extraordinary steps we have taken” for the 2020 elections relaxed too quickly and contributed to the horrific events of January 6 at the Capitol.”

Send the news: The whistleblower will reveal her identity on “60 Minutes” and lay out allegations based on thousands of pages of internal research she provided to the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to CBS.

  • She claims she can “prove that Facebook is lying to the public and investors about the effectiveness of its campaigns to eradicate hate, violence and misinformation from its platforms,” ​​according to CBS.

  • Facebook is criticized for its internal research into the negative impact of Instagram on teenage girls after the whistleblower leaked a wealth of documents to the Wall Street Journal.

What they say: “The evidence out there simply does not support the idea that Facebook, or more generally social media, is the primary cause of polarization,” Clegg said in the memo sent Friday, according to the NYT.

What to watch: Clegg will appear on the CNN’s “Reliable Sources” on Sunday morning.

Go deeper: Facebook’s secrecy boomerang

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