As the Stop Hate for Profit campaign inspires over 150 major companies and counting to pull their advertising from Facebook, its appeaser-in-chief has slid open his webcam cover and got back to work defending the indefensible.
MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle gave us a chance to check in on the former deputy prime minister’s evolution into a full-time Colin Firth tribute act, in which he insisted Facebook is “making leaps and bounds” in its efforts to remove hateful content. Hang on a minute – we thought he’d been brought on to apologise? Do we sense a brazen new approach? We watched on as he responded to speculation that the social media site had developed policies to please Donald Trump’s administration as “nonsense on stilts”, to which the host replied, “I don’t know what that means”.
The old British charm appears to have worn off, and it’s been replaced with the sort of unblinking lack of self-reflection that prompted Twitter’s recent high-profile outcasts to jump straight over to Parler like blood-starved fleas. Clegg claiming “it is not true that Facebook is awash with hate speech” therefore draws the same question we ask ourselves whenever we see its users misconstrue the purpose of Black Lives Matter: are these people bereft of a conscience or just thick?