Facebook Pays GOP Firm to Discredit TikTok

A new report has allegedly revealed that Meta employs a top GOP firm to stir up malcontent for its biggest rival, TikTok, as well as divert attention away from Meta’s privacy and antitrust concerns.

Reportedly, the company, Targeted Victory, launched a nationwide media and lobbying campaign with the intention of painting TikTok as a threat to American children and society.

According to the Washington Post, which broke the story, a firm director sent an email saying the goal is to “get the message out that while Meta is the current punching bag, TikTok is the real threat especially as a foreign owned app that is #1 in sharing data that young teens are using.”

Targeted Victory is said to have pushed Meta’s agenda by spreading news reports blaming hazardous internet trends like the “slap a teacher challenge” on TikTok, despite the fact that the movement originated on Facebook. 

The firm also reportedly assisted in the placement of op-eds and letters to the editor in local publications such as the Denver Post and Des Moines Register, highlighting concerns about China “deliberately collecting behavioral data on our kids.”

Meta chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has openly pointed the finger at TikTok for his company’s decline. Meta’s share price has dropped over 40% in the last six months.

A spokesperson for Meta said:

“We believe all platforms, including TikTok, should face a level of scrutiny consistent with their growing success.”

Targeted Victory’s CEO Zac Moffatt previously worked as digital director of Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign. He told The New York Post he is “working on a list of points where the [Washington Post’s] reporting was inaccurate or just totally wrong.”

He said:

“Targeted Victory’s corporate practice manages bipartisan teams on behalf of our clients. It is public knowledge we have worked with Meta for several years and we are proud of the work we have done.”

Moffatt also took to Twitter to discuss the original report by The Washington Post, as they did not respond to his requests to speak further on the subject. He claims the news outlet manufactured the story and key points are actually false.

He tweeted in part, “These viral stories about TikTok they claims [sic] are “rumors” were actually reported by their own newspaper, some from over 6 months ago. We emailed *their own* reporting!”



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