Both essentially expressed frustration with the social media giant for allowing equal representation of conservative publications.
The meeting took place just days before media giants Facebook, Twitter, and Google, answered questions before Congress regarding the social media censorship.
According to The Wall Street Journal, BuzzFeed editor- in-chief Ben Smith outwardly complained that conservative representation at the meeting accounted for half of the outlets. According to him Facebook had a “fundamental misconception” about how the news industry works—a claim which received agreement from the other leftist media executives.
Smith claims that the social platform had invited approximately a dozen outlets, six of which were conservative in their reporting. Smith alleges that doing so gives substance to the arguments posed by conservatives that major outlets as the New York Times and the Washington Post are left-leaning and in social media need to be balanced by conservative reporting. Smith asserts that the Times and Post are both unbiased.
In particular, however, Ben Smith specifically picked out the Daily Caller’s presence at the meeting to complain about. According to him, the conservative-leaning publisher had low journalistic standards, but avoided his own organization’s shortcomings.
Smith’s contempt is likely due to the controversial stories that the Daily Caller has posted about BuzzFeed in the past.
Huff Post editor-in-chief, Lydia Polgreen, also weighed in on the Daily Caller’s low journalistic standards and criticized the outlet who accurately reported a controversial story last month about one of her staff members.
According to the story, prior to joining Huff Post as a front-page-editor, Philip Lewis made several provocative comments on twitter. Lewis’ feed contained anti-Semitic and Holocaust jokes as well as homophobic comments. He also tweeted support for Louis Farrakan and hate for police officers.
Both publishing heads, in passing judgment, failed to honestly acknowledge their own media biases as well as poor standards in their field. Ben Smith has engaged in several media scandals, the most recently pronounced of which, was the printing of the fictitious “Trump Dossier”. CNN reported on the fake document solely on what Buzz Feed posted and caused a firestorm that still exists today.