Cryptheory – Just Crypto

Cryptocurrencies are our life! Get an Overview of Market News

Facebook poised to axe its politician protection policy following Trump suspension

3 min read

Facebook is planning to stop giving politicians special speech protections that are not extended to ordinary users, a decision that could have significant implications for how leaders use the platform, according to a report.

The company has long allowed politicians much more freedom on its platform than standard users, explaining that it does not want to restrict freedom of political expression, despite controversy over its previous decisions to allow inflammatory posts from former US President Donald Trump to stay online.

Facebook’s Oversight Board, an independent group of experts funded by the company to review its decisions on content regulation, recently gave it until 5 June to decide whether politicians should be exposed to the same rules that apply to all other users.

The suggestion was part of the board’s May review of whether the company was right to suspend Mr Trump from the platform, which it did after declaring he had used Facebook and Instagram to “incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government” in January’s Capitol Hill riots.

Facebook is also set to clarify the decisions it makes in applying a number of strikes to accounts found to have broken its rules, including letting users know when they’ve been given a strike that could lead to an eventual suspension, according to tech site The Verge.

(FILES) In this file photo taken on May 5, 2021, in this photo illustration, a phone screen displays the statement of former US President Donald Trump on his Facebook page background in Arlington, Virginia. - Donald Trump encouraged the Capitol rioters and so earned his Facebook ban, but the social media giant's rules are in "shambles" and need fixing, the co-chair of the network's oversight panel said on May 9, 2021. (Photo by Olivier DOULIERY / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images)
Donald Trump is still suspended from using Facebook (Photo: AFP/Getty)

Moderating political speech in the same manner as Facebook’s other users would mark a considerable U-turn in the company’s traditionally liberal attitudes towards what politicians can and cannot say on it.

The social network’s current guidelines exempt politicians from its third-party fact-checking programme as it does not believe it was “appropriate” for the company to “referee political debates and prevent a politician’s speech from reaching its audience and being subject to public debate and scrutiny,” Nick Clegg, the company’s vice president of global affairs and communications, said in 2019.

“It’s not new that politicians say nasty things about each other – that wasn’t invented by Facebook. What is new is that now they can reach people with far greater speed and at a far greater scale. That’s why we draw the line at any speech which can lead to real world violence and harm.”

Posts from politicians that violate Facebook’s content policies have been allowed to remain on the site if the public interest in them outweighs their harm, although Facebook made an exemption by banning Mr Trump in January.

“His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters at the Capitol building has rightly disturbed people in the US and around the world,” Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook at the time.

“We removed these statements yesterday because we judged that their effect – and likely their intent – would be to provoke further violence.”

Read More - Featured Image

Read More

Facebook’s guidelines allow users to call for the death of politicians and other public figures

Facebook has yet to announce whether Mr Trump will be allowed to return to its platform, after the Oversight Board gave it six months to decide on a “proportionate response”, which could see the former president’s account restored, permanently blocked or suspended for a definite period of time.

The board said that while it was upholding the company’s decision to suspend Mr Trump’s access to post content on Facebook and Instagram, it was “not appropriate for Facebook to impose the indeterminate and standardless penalty of indefinite suspension”.

Mr Trump set up a section on his website called From the Desk of Donald J Trump in early May, intended to act as a blog replacement for the major social networks he has either been permanently or temporarily banned from.

However, the section has now been taken down and has no intention of returning, Mr Trump’s aide Jason Miller told CNBC earlier this week.


All content in this article is for informational purposes only and in no way serves as investment advice. Investing in cryptocurrencies, commodities and stocks is very risky and can lead to capital losses.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *