Biden Says Facebook 'Isn't Killing People' But Asks It to Fight Vaccine Misinformation

President Joe Biden said Monday that "Facebook isn't killing people" by allowing their platform to share COVID-19 misinformation, but he urged the company to crack down on the dozen or so users who are spreading lies about vaccines.

Biden on Monday sought to clarify, or at least partially reiterate, his passing comment to reporters outside the White House last week that Facebook is "killing people" through COVID-19 misinformation. Biden was asked by reporters Friday what his message to social media outlets is regarding bogus posts and public health misinformation. The president's response that the sharing of such lies is keeping people from being vaccinated drew the ire of Facebook, with the company's vice president of integrity sharing data Saturday which refuted Biden's remarks.

"My hope is that Facebook instead of taking it personally that somehow I am saying that Facebook is killing people that they would do something about the misinformation. The outrageous misinformation about the vaccine. That's what I meant," Biden told reporters at the White House Monday morning.

Biden continued, describing the lead-up to Friday remarks about Facebook "killing people" through the spread of disinformation. He noted that only a handful of the platform's users are reported to be promulgating such lies about vaccinations.

"It was pointed out that Facebook of all the misinformation, 60 percent of the misinformation came from 12 individuals. That's what the article said. So I was asked that question about what do I think is happening? Facebook isn't killing people. These 12 people are out there giving misinformation. Anyone listening to it is getting hurt by it. It is killing people. It's bad information," the president continued.

On Friday, Biden initially told reporters, "I mean they really, look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated, and that's—they're [Facebook is] killing people."

Newsweek reached out to the White House Monday for any additional remarks about the Facebook, coronavirus misinformation claims.

Joe Biden
This week, Joe Biden accused Facebook of being the “foremost propagator” of voting disinformation. Here, Biden speaks at the Black Economic Summit at Camp North End in Charlotte, North Carolina, on September 23, 2020. JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty