About 76% of American adults believe that Facebook, whose parent company has recently changed its name to Meta, is making society worse, and half of the respondents know someone who started to believe in conspiracy theories due to the social media giant, according to a CNN poll out on Wednesday.
The survey was conducted on the SSRS Opinion Panel among US adults ages 18 and older. The poll was carried out from November 1-4 among 1,004 respondents.
Among those who believe that Facebook is making American society worse, 44% are Republicans and 27% Democrats, according to the poll.
At least 49% of the respondents say they know someone who they believe was persuaded to trust a conspiracy theory because of content seen on Facebook.
The poll comes on the heels of a scandal which saw a former Facebook product manager, Frances Haugen, tell Congress in October that Facebook was allegedly aware that it inflicted harm on the mental health of teenagers, but did not do much to prevent content promoting hate and division, while putting profit over users’ safety instead. CEO Mark Zuckerberg dismissed the accusations, saying the company cares deeply about issues like safety, well-being and mental health.
The company has since renamed itself Meta to foster a new public image. On Monday, Haugen said that Facebook’s top management knows how to technically make the platform safer for users but chooses not to do so to maximize profits.