Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg made the announcement during the company's fourth quarter earnings call Wednesday, saying it was part of the company's efforts to "turn down the temperature and discourage divisive conversations."
"One of the top pieces of feedback that we're hearing from our community right now is that people don't want politics and fighting to take over their experience on our services," Zuckerberg said, noting that the company is also working to reduce the amount of political content in News Feed.
Facebook had previously committed to removing political groups from recommendations in the U.S. in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election. But an investigation by The Markup recently found that lots of groups related to politics were continuing to slip through the cracks.
Issie Lapowsky (@issielapowsky) is a senior reporter at Protocol, covering the intersection of technology, politics, and national affairs. Previously, she was a senior writer at Wired, where she covered the 2016 election and the Facebook beat in its aftermath. Prior to that, Issie worked as a staff writer for Inc. magazine, writing about small business and entrepreneurship. She has also worked as an on-air contributor for CBS News and taught a graduate-level course at New York University’s Center for Publishing on how tech giants have affected publishing. Email Issie.