Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

CZI-Funded Researchers Send Letter

More than 140 researchers funded by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative sent a letter to Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, to urge him to enforce the company's misinformation policies, the Washington Post reports

The letter signatories include researchers from the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub, who the Post notes have been working on making COVID-19 testing more broadly available as well as other researchers from, for instance, Columbia University, Stanford University, and Harvard University, who receive CZI funding. According to the Post, CZI was founded in 2015 with the aims of eradicating disease and using technology to improve learning and reform the criminal justice system. While it is separate from Facebook, Zuckberg and Priscilla Chan are both CEOs of CZI, it notes.

In their letter, the writers say that social media platforms enable the global spread of information, but also of misinformation and say that the spread of misinformation can lead to "confusion and a mistrust of experts." Because of this, the letter-writers say they are concerned that Facebook has not followed its own policies in its handling of "misinformation and incendiary statements" issued by President Donald Trump. 

"It's not our job to tell Mark Zuckerberg how to run his company," the University of Utah's Jason Shepherd, one of organizers of the letter, tells the Post. "But we wanted to at least voice a concern [about] his conflicting missions that we are involved in."

In a statement, CZI notes the separation between it and Facebook. Chan, in an email to CZI employees, acknowledges the tension between the two organizations, and adds, according to the Post, that she believes "we are driving real progress and change across science, education, criminal justice reform, housing, immigration, in our local community and beyond."