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Facebook suspends Trump's account until 2023

Facebook suspends Trump's account until 2023”

Facebook suspended Trump's account the day after the January 6 Capitol Hill riot, determining he had incited violence. "We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly and other markers of civil unrest". We are suspending his accounts for two years, effective from the date of the initial suspension on January 7 this year, Nick Clegg, vice president of global affairs, Facebook said in a blog post on Friday.

"Given the gravity of the circumstances that led to Mr. Trump's suspension, we believe his actions constituted a severe violation of our rules which merit the highest penalty available under the new enforcement protocols", Facebook said.

That's a reversal of how Facebook has treated politicians since 2019, when Clegg said the company believed political speech was "newsworthy content that should, as a general rule, be seen and heard".

In its decision last month, the board agreed with Facebook that two of Trump's January 6 posts "severely violated" the content standards of both Facebook and Instagram. They shouldn't be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win.

The social media giant said on Friday that while it will still apply this "newsworthiness" exemption to certain posts it deems to be in the public interest even if they violate Facebook rules, it will no longer treat material posted by politicians any differently from what's posted by anyone else.

Facebook said it will reexamine Trump's suspension when this two-year period comes to a close.

The announcements are in response to recommendations from the company's quasi-independent oversight board.

More news: New York City prosecutors form grand jury on Trump criminal probe

The decision came on the same day as Europe and Britain launched formal antitrust investigations into whether Facebook misuses its vast trove of customer data. He added that additional scrutiny would be applied to Trump's account when it is restored, and that he could still be permanently banned from the platform for future behavior. The company says it has never used the newsworthiness exemption for any of Trump's posts.

Battle over truth and speech: Liberal groups for years have hammered Facebook for failing to enforce its policies against Trump, including throughout the 2020 presidential campaign as he spread false claims of mass voter fraud.

However, a Facebook spokesman confirmed politicians' posts will remain exempt from third-party fact-checking.

The decision and the policy changes could have major ramifications for how Facebook handles rule-breaking world leaders and officials on its services. "But in doing so, the board criticized the open-ended nature of the suspension, stating that 'it was not appropriate for Facebook to impose the indeterminate and standardless penalty of indefinite suspension.' The board instructed us to review the decision and respond in a way that is clear and proportionate, and made a number of recommendations on how to improve our policies and processes". The company will now have one month, six months, one year and two years suspensions for public figures who violate its rules.

In addition, once they're allowed back on Facebook, these users will face "heightened penalties" including permanent bans.

"Once again, Facebook fails to do the right thing to protect our democracy", said Jim Steyer, founder of the left-leaning Common Sense Media advocacy group.



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