Facebook 'between a telco and a newspaper'

Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook has improved its ability to counter online election interference.
Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook has improved its ability to counter online election interference.

Online content should be regulated with a system somewhere between the existing rules used for the telecoms and media industries, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has told global leaders and security chiefs.

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference in Germany, Zuckerberg says Facebook has improved its work countering online election interference.

He expanded on his previous calls for regulation of social media firms.

"I do think that there should be regulation on harmful content ... there's a question about which framework you use for this," Zuckerberg said during a question and answer session on Saturday.

"Right now there are two frameworks that I think people have for existing industries - there's like newspapers and existing media, and then there's the telco-type model, which is 'the data just flows through you', but you're not going to hold a telco responsible if someone says something harmful on a phone line."

"I actually think where we should be is somewhere in between," he said.

Facebook and social media giants including Twitter and Google have come under increasing pressure to better combat governments and political groups using the platforms to spread false and misleading information.

Zuckerberg said he now employs 35,000 people to review online content and implement security measures.

Those teams and Facebook's automated technology currently suspend more than one million fake accounts each day, he said, adding that "the vast majority are detected within minutes of signing up".

"Our budget is bigger today than the whole revenue of the company when we went public in 2012, when we had a billion users," he said.

"I'm proud of the results but we will definitely have to stay vigilant."

Australian Associated Press