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Facebook Apologizes Over VR Shooting Game at CPAC

Newser — Michael Harthorne

Facebook has apologized for featuring a virtual-reality game called Bullet Train—in which players shoot people at a train station—in its booth at the Conservative Political Action Conference, USA Today reports.

Bullet Train was just one of a number of violent games featured at the Facebook booth. "In light of the recent events in Florida and out of respect for the victims and their families, we have removed them from this demo," says Huga Barra, Facebook vice president of virtual reality.

"We regret that we failed to do so in the first place." According to the Guardian, Facebook faced public backlash after video of the Bullet Train demo was posted to social media Friday.

"Seriously, Facebook?" reads one tweet. "You're at CPAC demonstrating a VR shooting game? A shooting game? You should be ashamed."

But it wasn't just violent virtual-reality games.

Facebook is facing criticism for participating in CPAC—to which it has given money—at all. Multiple NRA representatives, including CEO Wayne LaPierre, spoke at the event, which also featured a far-right French politician.

Some critics pointed out that Facebook has played a role in spreading conspiracy theories about the survivors of the Parkland shooting. Kira Lerner, a reporter at ThinkProgress, tweets that two CPAC attendees told her they saw proof on Facebook that Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students were crisis actors.

“Facebook routinely participates in events hosted by organizations across the political spectrum,” a Facebook spokesperson says. “Our involvement is not an endorsement of any particular position or platform.”

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