Mark Zuckerberg took to Facebook this weekend to apologize for the role his social media company played in the 2016 presidential election.

"For those I hurt this year, I ask forgiveness and I will try to be better," the Facebook co-founder wrote on his personal Facebook page late on Saturday. "For the ways my work was used to divide people rather than bring us together, I ask forgiveness and I will work to do better."

Zuckerberg, who is Jewish, posted the message as he celebrated Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. In recent weeks, he's acknowledged that Russian operatives used Facebook to spread divisive messages and the company gave investigators on Capitol Hill ads purchased by Russian forces.

The apology came after Facebook found 3,000 ads on its site that were purchased by Russian sources and said it would give them over to Congress on Monday. Zuckerberg's message is a pivot from where he originally stood on the issue. Just days after Trump won the election, he said in a Q&A that the idea that fake news on Facebook had influenced election results was "pretty crazy."

Meanwhile, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams apologized in May for the role his company may have played in the election results. "It's a very bad thing, Twitter's role in that," Williams told The New York Times in reference to Trump's claims that may not be president if it wasn't for Twitter. "If it's true that he wouldn't be president if it weren't for Twitter, then yeah, I'm sorry."

That was months before Twitter announced it has found and removed 201 accounts linked to Russian operatives who used Facebook to spread misinformation during the election. Twitter hasn't issued an apology since the discovery, but wrote in a blog post on Sept. 28 that it promises to keep users informed of its findings.

Published on: Oct 2, 2017