Former President Barack Obama took Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg aside in the weeks after the 2016 election and told him point-blank that hostile powers were using social media to spread disinformation and that it poses a clear threat to U.S. security, said The Washington Post on Sunday night.
The conversation reportedly took place on Nov. 19, days after Zuckerberg publicly dismissed the idea that foreign disinformation might have played a role in the Electoral College victory of President Donald Trump.
When Zuckerberg was asked in the days after the election whether foreign disinformation might have influenced the outcome, he dismissed the idea as “crazy.”
Days later, on Nov. 19, Obama and Zuckerberg were together at a delegation of world leaders and tech industry figures in Lima, Peru. Obama took the Facebook founder aside and implored him to take very seriously the threat posed by foreign actors using social media as a means to spread propaganda and sow divisiveness.