On Wednesday, Twitter and Facebook removed a video that Donald Trump posted in which he reiterated false claims about the 2020 election. Hours later, after his supporters attacked the Capitol building and interrupted the Electoral College vote count, his social media accounts were temporarily blocked.
Twitter first flagged the video with the message, “This claim of election fraud is disputed,” and disabled replies, retweets and likes on the tweet “due to a risk of violence.” Despite the decision to ultimately remove Trump’s video from the social media platforms, it was still viewed 13 million times on Twitter before it was taken down.
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After deleting the video, Twitter, via its @TwitterSafety account, noted that it had removed two other Trump tweets “for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy.” The company then proceeded to lock Trump’s account for 12 hours, stating that further violations could result in permanent suspension. Until now, Twitter has given the President some leeway due to his position, but any protection will end after he leaves office on January 20.
A Twitter spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter, “In regard to the ongoing situation in Washington, DC, Twitter’s Trust & Safety teams are working to protect the public conversation occurring on the service and will take action on any content that violates the Twitter Rules.”
Following Twitter’s decision to block Trump, Facebook also froze his account. “We’ve assessed two policy violations against President Trump’s Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time,” the company said in a statement last night.
Guy Rosen, VP of Integrity at Facebook, had initially tweeted that the company deleted the video “because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.” In a statement, a spokesperson for Facebook said that the company is “actively reviewing and removing any content that breaks these rules.”
Borat actor Sacha Baron Cohen called out Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki and Google CEO Sundar Pichai and urged them to ban Trump from their platforms, tweeting, “Donald Trump just incited a violent attack on American democracy. Is that FINALLY [sic] enough for you to act?!”
Source: Hollywood Reporter
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