Majority of Americans Believe Facebook is Making Society Worse, New Poll Finds
Seventy-six percent of adults think Facebook is making American society worse, according to a new poll.
A CNN poll conducted by SSRS earlier this month found that just 11 percent of respondents believed Facebook made society better and another 13 percent said it had no effect either way.
Even those who identified themselves as frequent Facebook users said 70 percent to 14 percent that the site damages, rather than helps, society. Among those who believe Facebook is harming society, 55 percent believe it is the way some people use Facebook that is more at fault, while 45 percent said it’s more due to the way the site is run.
One-third of the public believe that Facebook is making American society worse and that Facebook is more at fault than its users, the study found.
Nearly half of Americans (49 percent) said they know someone who they believe was persuaded to believe in a conspiracy theory because of content on Facebook. Sixty-one percent of adults younger than 35 said they know someone who adopted a conspiracy theory based on Facebook content. Just 35 percent of those age 65 or older said the same.
A majority of Americans (53 percent) said the federal government should increase its regulation of Facebook, including 55 percent of Democrats and 48 percent of Republicans.
The poll comes amid renewed scrutiny of Facebook after whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before the Senate last month and called for more regulation of the company. Haugen handed over a trove of internal documents, the so-called “Facebook Papers,” to Congress. While Robby Soave at Reason argues the documents represent “a Big Fat Nothingburger” — a sentiment shared by many conservatives — others have argued that the papers show Facebook has failed to effectively police content on its site and that is chooses maximum engagement over user safety.