Zuckerberg admits FBI influenced Facebook’s suppression of Hunter Biden laptop story

by Chris Lange

Chris Lange, FISM News


Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed that the FBI approached Facebook in the weeks leading up to the 2020 election, warning the platform about “Russian propaganda” ahead of the Hunter Biden laptop story. 

Zuckerberg told Spotify podcaster Joe Rogan during Thursday’s installment of “The Joe Rogan Experience” that Facebook users were “still allowed to share” the New York Post’s bombshell report that exposed questionable foreign business dealings of then-presidential candidate Joe Biden’s son. He admitted, however, that a “meaningful” percentage of them were prevented from seeing the information, which undercut Biden’s repeated claims that he knew “nothing” of his son’s shady overseas ventures.

Zuckerberg said the decision to limit the dissemination of the story on the platform was predicated on the FBI’s caution.

“Did [the FBI] specifically say you need to be on guard about that story?” Rogan asked.

“No, I don’t remember if it was that specifically, but it basically fit the pattern,” Zuckerberg said.

“Basically, the background here is the FBI, I think, basically came to us- some folks on our team and was like, ‘Hey, just so you know, like, you should be on high alert … We thought that there was a lot of Russian propaganda in the 2016 election. We have it on notice that, basically, there’s about to be some kind of dump of – that’s similar to that. So just be vigilant.'” 

Rogan proceeded to ask Zuckerberg if he had any regrets about suppressing the story.

“When something like that turns out to be real, is there regret for not having it evenly distributed and for throttling the distribution of that story?” Rogan asked, referring to the New York Times March 2022 acknowledgment of the veracity of the Post story following more than a year of denial.

The Times and other mainstream media outlets had refused to report on the Post story or dismissed it as “Russian disinformation” until recently, while those on the right who accurately reported on the story were branded conspiracy theorists or Trump propagandists. 

“Yeah, it sucks,” Zuckerberg said. “It turned out after the fact, the fact-checkers looked into it, no one was able to say it was false … I think it sucks, though, in the same way that probably having to go through a criminal trial but being proven innocent in the end sucks.”

In what appeared to be an attempt to deflect criticism of Facebook’s censorship of the story, the multi-billionaire threw shade on former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, insisting that Facebook used a much more lenient protocol in its suppression of the story than did Twitter. 

“What Twitter did is they said you can’t share this at all. We didn’t do that,” Zuckerberg insisted. 

More than 50 former senior intelligence officials signed on to a letter asserting that the laptop story “has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

House Judiciary Republicans launched a probe into Facebook and Twitter over their censorship of the Hunter Biden laptop story, accusing the social media behemoths of interfering to influence the outcome of an election and free speech violations. 

In April, Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) called out the mainstream media for their “complicit” nature in covering up the Hunter Biden laptop story after the New York Post initially broke the story in October 2020. Johnson said at the time that “the media is being caught in a cover-up” and they are slowly reporting the truth to get “by the moment.”

Johnson claimed the media was using a Watergate-style technique known as “a limited hangout” where they release bits and pieces of the data while still holding back the most important parts. Former Central Intelligence Agency official Victor Marchetti wrote in his book that media outlets do this because they “can no longer rely on a phony cover story to misinform the public.”

Republicans have vowed to undertake a full investigation if they succeed in taking back the House this fall.

A Media Research poll of Biden voters after the 2020 election revealed that 17% would not have voted for him had they been aware of the New York Post story.