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Uh Oh: Facebook Faces an NFL, ESPN, CNN Moment

A recent poll by the Media Research Center reveals conservatives are picking up their “likes” and “followers” on Facebook and heading for the hills. Could this mean that the social media giant is sliding down that same slippery slope of the NFL, CNN, and ESPN?

Depending on whose numbers you believe, the NFL lost nearly $30M and its TV partners approximately $500M over players disrespecting the national anthem by “taking a knee.” And when ESPN decided that everyone in the world of sports wanted to hear their anchors spout leftist ideology instead of hearing the daily box scores, its subscriber base collapsed. Nielsen ratings show that ESPN lost 621,000 subscribers – the worst figures in history – in November of 2016. Meanwhile, Fake News Central, also known as CNN, has been in panic mode over its loss in viewership. Their collapse in credibility has coincided with their rating freefall. Coincidence?

Not a chance.

So here we are again. Perhaps the players have changed, but the game is essentially one and the same. This Media Research Center survey is very telling about the future consumer defection of Facebook and others who have decided to play dirty politics with their platform. The poll, conducted for the MRC by McLaughlin & Associates, surveyed self-described conservative attitudes regarding the house that Zuckerberg built as well as Twitter and YouTube. And the results, according to MRC President L. Brent Bozell, are “devastating to any CEO responsible for addressing the concerns of his customer base.”

It’s not Pretty

Here are the cold, hard facts of the survey:

  • 7% of conservatives have already left Facebook.
  • 25% are seriously considering it.

These numbers should jolt Mark Zuckerberg more than a double-espresso, no whip Grande administered via IV drip. As Bozell states:

 “The question Facebook and other social media companies need to ask themselves is this: Do you want to be seen as an open platform for all political beliefs or would you rather be considered a left-wing public interest group that censors free speech worldwide?”

Mr. Bozell points out what should be apparent to the powers that be at Facebook – but thus far appears to be lost on them – and that is: Playing this political game will cost the social media giant bigtime.

At the very least Facebook should be worried that they’ve suffered defeat in the trust war with their conservative base. The poll shows that 66.1% of conservative Facebook users do not trust the platform to treat all of its users equally, regardless of political beliefs.

Alarm Bells?

Alarm bells should be going off all over Menlo Park, California, at Facebook HQ. But alas one wonders if anyone out there in La-La-Land is listening? It appears that these mammoth leftist platforms believe they can hide their bias in plain sight and that no one will see them. But it is no longer a question of whether this one-sided political behavior is occurring – it clearly is – it is a question of whether Facebook and its cohorts care that they will pay the price for it with their customer base.

This survey depicts a consumer atmosphere that could potentially mean millions of people will stop using their platform. It is a portent of things to come and would be incredibly costly to Facebook in the marketplace. Perhaps the answer is staring conservatives in the face. Let the market decide. Forget all the legal machinations of breaking up the big boys and let consumers take a walk on the wild side.

Read More From Leesa K. Donner

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