What if Facebook Is the Real ‘Silent Majority’?

Source: New York Times

Right-wing influencers are dominating the political discussion on Facebook, raising questions about whether it will translate into electoral success in November.

Listen, liberals. If you don’t think Donald Trump can get re-elected in November, you need to spend more time on Facebook.

Since the 2016 election, I’ve been obsessively tracking how partisan political content is performing on Facebook, the world’s largest and arguably most influential media platform. Every morning, one of the first browser tabs I open is CrowdTangle — a handy Facebook-owned data tool that offers a bird’s-eye view of what’s popular on the platform. I check which politicians and pundits are going viral. I geek out on trending topics. I browse the previous day’s stories to see which got the most reactions, shares and comments.

Most days, the leader board looks roughly the same: conservative post after conservative post, with the occasional liberal interloper. (If you want to see these lists for yourselves, you can check out @FacebooksTop10, a Twitter account I created that shows the top 10 most-interacted-with link posts by U.S. Facebook pages every day.)

It’s no secret that, despite Mr. Trump’s claims of Silicon Valley censorship, Facebook has been a boon to him and his allies, and hyperpartisan Facebook pages are nothing new. (In fact, my colleague John Herrman wrote about them four years ago this month.)

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