MRC's Nick Kangadis


Facebook fact-checked a post contrasting Kyle Rittenhouse and Timothy Simpkins: MRC's Nick Kangadis posted a graphic contrasting teen shooters Kyle Rittenhouse and Timothy Simpkins. The graphic read "Kyle Rittenhouse: Shoots three criminals in self defense[.] Bail set at $2 million[.] Harassed by state prosecutors and news media to this day[.] Timothy Simpkins: Brings a gun to school, shoots four people including a teacher[.] Bail set at $25k[.] Released the next day." Facebook fact-checker PolitiFact flagged the post as half-true, claiming that the graphic gave a false comparison because Rittenhouse killed two people in self-defense and faced homicide charges whereas Simpkins merely faced aggravated assault charges. The fact-check also noted that Simpkins' bail was set at $75k not $25k and that although Simpkins was released from jail, he is awaiting his court date which was set for Dec. 10, 2021. After two months of jail time, Rittenhouse was similarly released nearly a year before his court date. According to Facebook, users fail to click through a fact-check interstitial to see the post 95% of the time. Instagram, owned by Facebook, likely sees a similar effect.