Facebook Brexit bias row as app makes users back leaving EU but NOT remaining

The feature has sparked a bias row

When writing a status, users can click a button to show how they are feeling – and one of the options is ‘in favour of leaving the EU’. Facebook is embroiled in a Brexit bias row after it emerged that the social network’s app lets users choose to show their support for leaving the EU – but NOT remaining.

But there is no option to back remaining, political blogger Jon Worth tweeted.

Users clicking on ‘supporting’ also have the option of selecting Leave.EU but there is no similar option for the Remain camp.

There is no similar option for remaining in the EU available to users on the app

One furious user wrote: “Another example, among too many others, of Facebook’s bias.”

Another added: “Apple going for anti establishment users?”

Some users have reported that they could choose being in favour of remaining in the EU – but to do so requires typing a search term into the app and the option relatively hidden from view.

The ‘feelings’ feature lets Facebook users express how they are feeling or what causes they are interested in by attaching a relevant emoji to their status.

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It comes after the social network faced scrutiny over allegations that company employees blocked news about right-wing issues from the Trending Topics list.

A US Senate committee launched an inquiry on Tuesday, after a report claimed that workers “routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers”.

The inflammatory report, which cited a former Facebook employee, also accused staff of artificially “injecting” stories about issues close to their hearts – such as the Black Lives Matter movement – into the Trending Topics list.

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Facebook has denied the allegations, claiming there are “strict guidelines” in place for the review team to ensure consistency and neutrality.

A spokeswoman said: “People who search for ‘EU’ when they are using our status tool will see a full range of options enabling them to add if they are thinking of leaving or remaining in the EU.

“People scrolling through the list of activities see options based on what their friends and other people have been using.”

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