Facebook will pay users to log off before the 2020 elections asking to refrain from using the site and Instagram in the weeks before November.
Zuckerberg’s company is trying to reduce the impact of social media on voting so they decided to pay selected members up to $120 to deactivate their accounts. Starting at the end of this month, they predict between 200,000 and 400,000 people to take part. The research will be carried out by independent data scientists and the results will be seen next year.
Liz Bourgeois, from Facebook, tweeted: “Anyone who chooses to opt-in – whether it’s completing surveys or deactivating FB or IG for a period of time – will be compensated,” and continued: “This is fairly standard for this type of academic research.”
The company described the plan: “Representative, scientific samples of people in the US will be selected and invited to participate in the study. Some potential participants will see a notice in Facebook or Instagram inviting them to take part in the study,” and added: “Study samples will be designed to ensure that participants mirror the diversity of the US adult population, as well as users of Facebook and Instagram.”
They also explained: “To continue to amplify all that is good for democracy on social media, and mitigate against that which is not, we need more objective, dispassionate, empirically grounded research.”