After President Donald Trump posted an unfounded claim to Facebook (FB) on Tuesday that mail-in voting could lead to a “corrupt election,” the social network slapped a label on it. But the label did not attempt to fact-check the post as true or false. Instead, it directed users to a government website to learn more about how to vote.
The response is part of Facebook’s new policy, announced by CEO Mark Zuckerberg last month, to label posts about the November election. In recent days, Facebook has placed the same label beneath a mix of posts from Trump and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, including one from the former vice president calling to “vote Donald Trump out this November” that does not make any factual assertions about voting.
This new approach has already been criticized by some industry watchers who worry the labels are confusing or could even be viewed as tacit endorsements of the President’s controversial posts.
“This warning seems pretty useless — it might even seem that Facebook is endorsing what Trump is saying and providing a path for more information,” Rick Hasen, a professor of law and political science at the University of California, Irvine, wrote on Twitter.