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Facebook Paid Republican Firm to Run TikTok Smear Campaign

TikTok

TikTok has been Facebook’s number one rival in the social media space. Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive has even said that TikTok is a major obstacle.

With declining app downloads and usage, Meta’s apps have tried to lure TikTok’s millennial and Gen-Z users by cloning the app’s features including launching Instagram Reels and Facebook Reels.

Teens are spending 2X and 3X more time on TikTok when compared to Instagaram.

Facebook Internal Report

Well, that has not been enough. Facebook got dirty and paid a Targeted Victory, one of the biggest Republican consulting firm in a smear campaign against TikTok.


Documents seen by The Washington Post reveal that Meta hired the firm to tear down TikTok.

They planted negative stories by placing op-eds in regional news outlets in America like the Denver Post and Des Moines Register.

“Get the message out that while Meta is the current punching bag, TikTok is the real threat especially as a foreign-owned app that is #1 in sharing data that young teens are using,” reads an email written by a Targeted Victory director.

The smear campaign aimed to amplify negative TikTok coverage through a Google document titled “Bad TikTok Clips”

Meta was trying to redirect privacy concerns from its apps to TikTok.

The campaign went to the extent of portraying TikTok in bad light by pushing stories in local media tying TikTok to dangerous teen trends in an effort to show the app’s purported harms, The Post reports.

“Dream would be to get stories with headlines like ‘From dances to danger: how TikTok has become the most harmful social media space for kids,’ ”

Go read the full story here.

Meta’s spokesperson Andy Stone’s comment shows just how little they care about being caught red handed doing nefarious shit. Next level arrogance, coming from a company that continues to get away with pretty much anything. No accountability breeds this type of brazenness. pic.twitter.com/96GODZXW5r

— Yael Eisenstat (@YaelEisenstat) March 30, 2022

The fact Facebook paid a PR firm to agitate the GOP about TikTok partially explains why a party that could not give any less of a shit about consumer privacy, spent the last two years pretending to care about TikTok consumer privacy

— Karl Bode (@KarlBode) March 30, 2022

Not surprising. Meta handles problems through PR tactics rather than focusing on studying and fixing the broken parts that cause real world harm and undermine societies and communities. Time to regulate. Facebook paid GOP firm to malign TikTokhttps://t.co/a6uSeiUzWx

— Brian Boland 🔺 (@brianboland) March 30, 2022

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