CNN reporter claims The Babylon Bee uses satire to bypass Facebook’s misinformation policies

CNN reporter claims The Babylon Bee uses satire to bypass Facebook’s misinformation policies

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A CNN "disinformation" reporter has drawn a flood of critical and derisive reactions on Twitter after suggesting satirical Christian website The Babylon Bee was trying to circumvent Facebook's disinformation policies and spread false information by posing as "satire."

"Having a disclaimer buried somewhere on your site that says it’s “satire” seems like a good way to get around a lot of the changes Facebook has made to reduce the spread of clickbait and misinformation," tweeted CNN's Donnie O'Sullivan on Sunday night.

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O'Sullivan's complaint comes after the Babylon Bee posted a satirical article on Friday mocking Democrats over their criticism of Trump's decision to order, without Congress' approval, a drone strike in Baghdad that killed top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

The article, titled “Democrats Call For Flags To Be Flown At Half-Mast To Grieve Death Of Soleimani,” garnered over 500,000 Facebook shares and outperformed the top stories by CNN and The New York Times.

O'Sullivan provided three examples of gullible conservatives taking the article seriously but complained that there were too many people who believed it.

"To put this in perspective, this is the same number of engagements the top NY Times and CNN stories on Facebook had over the past week. A lot of people sharing this "satirical" story on Facebook don't know it is satire," he tweeted.

The backlash: Many on Twitter immediately slammed O'Sullivan's tweet. "Everyone knows the Babylon Bee is a parody, and everyone but CNN and NY Times knows that CNN and NY Times are also parody," one user wrote.

"Only idiots don't know the Bee is satire. Ahem," another tweeted.

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“The problem isn't that people can't recognize satire. It's that the media can't recognize its own blatant bias,” said another person. “That's one reason why satire has become so popular.”

CNN's Brian Stelter has also previously criticized the Babylon Bee, calling it  “a fake news site.”

In response to CNN's criticism, the Bee published an article Tuesday mocking the network. The article, titled "CNN Attacks Babylon Bee: 'The Internet Is Only Big Enough For One Fake News Site" jokingly (falsely) cited CNN's Stelter as saying: "They're obviously amateurs over there at The Bee," said Brian Stelter. "A lot of times, their reporting comes true. If you're gonna do fake news, do it right -- 100% fake, guaranteed, 24/7. They really should learn from the pros over here at CNN."

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