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Friday Scoop: Facebook’s Fake News

đź’«Plus, catch a falling star and put it in your pocket…

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is the topic of controversy — again. (image: Wikimedia Commons)

The big story…

Facebook Faces Criticism Over New York Times Investigation

A New York Times investigation revealed Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg’s involvement — or rather, lack thereof — in the spread of Russian disinformation on the platform during the 2016 election (as well as a few other things). To combat the barrage of backlash the company was receiving at the time, Facebook hired the conservative opposition research firm Definers Public Affairs to handle PR problems by discrediting competitors and critics, including linking anti-Facebook groups to liberal philanthropist George Soros (often through anti-semitism).

Zuckerberg responded saying that he had no previous knowledge of Facebook’s work with the firm and that the platform would no longer be doing business with them. Zuckerberg also denies the Times‘ claim that Definers wrote articles for Facebook and helped to spread misinformation. Sandberg responded to the report refuting that Facebook ever purposely concealed the Russia’s involvement on the platform during the 2016 election. As the ever-controversial company is in full damage control mode, people have a lot of questions about the future of Facebook.


In national news…

California Wildfires Continue to Claim Lives

The death toll in the California wildfires rises to 63 with over 600 people still missing. President Trump will be visiting the state on Saturday to observe the damage and meet with victims. On the other side of the country a snow storm sent destruction throughout the Northeast killing 8 and leaving almost 300,000 homes without power.


In international news…

Khashoggi Killers to Receive the Death Penalty

The Saudi government is seeking the death penalty for 5 of its agents indicted for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Although the Saudi government has changed its story several times, officials maintain the innocence of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in connection to the killing. Meanwhile a bipartisan group of Senators have proposed a prohibition of arms sales with the country.


In not-so-secret news…

U.S. Prepares Charges Against Julian Assange

The news that the U.S. Justice Department is planning to indict Wikileaks founder Julian Assange was, ironically, accidentally leaked.


In #MeToo…

Women Sue Dartmouth for Ignoring Sexual Assault Claims

Seven women are suing the Ivy League School for failing to take action against three professors implicated in sexual assault allegations. The plaintiffs allege that the school perpetuated a “21st century Animal House” culture. Dartmouth students were shocked and angered by the news of the lawsuit.


In higher education…

Feet Up, Get Out!

A white teacher at the University of San Antonio Texas called the police on a black student for putting her feet up. Read more about it in Ojanae Marshall’s report for CMN.


In fashion…

Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Flies from Fashion to Controversy

The long-controversial Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show just got a little bit more complicated. Read a recap of the show and the debate about inclusivity in Courtney Good’s report for CMN.


In art…

David Hockney Painting Sets Record at Auction

David Hockney’s “Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)” was sold at auction for $90.3 million — the largest auction sum ever paid for the work of a living artist.


Trending today…

Kanye and Zuck Want It That Way

The unlikely duo of Kanye West and Mark Zuckerberg allegedly jammed out to the Backstreet Boys’ “I Want It That Way” at a spontaneous karaoke session. We’re not saying we don’t believe it, but some video evidence would help.


Last but not least…

7 Must-Hear New Singles

Looking for some new music to listen to? Head on over to CMN to read Cody Ayers’ recommendations.


Friday’s Morning Scoop was made possible by Ojanae Marshall, Courtney Good, Cody Ayers, and the CMN Staff. Don’t miss the Leonid meteor shower this weekend!

Are you looking for digital journalism training and experience? Are you a journalism major who wants to take your career to the next level? CMN’s Digital Journalism course gives you real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to journalism influencers and mentors, and a great place to display your work. You can get academic credit too. Check out the Digital Journalism Course here.

Grace Cooper is a recent graduate of the University of Pittsburgh where she studied Nonfiction Writing and Psychology. When she's not obsessively reading or writing about the news, you can probably find her eating too much pizza and watching When Harry Met Sally for the hundredth time.

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