Last Updated on February 17, 2022
Facebook is removing calls for peaceful protests in Washington DC, and photos and videos from protestors, which are tantamount to “promotion of criminal activity.”
Hundreds of thousands of Trump supporters gathered in the nation’s capital, to protest the Electoral College certification in Congress, where many states allegedly won by Joe Biden suffered from severe election integrity issues, and massive voter fraud.
Thousands of patriots stormed the Capitol Building, forcing the joint session of Congress to be suspended. One unarmed Trump supporter, purportedly a young woman, was shot and killed by DC Police just outside the Senate chambers. An eyewitness told National File that she was shot by “a man in a suit,” and that police prevented him from giving her medical attention.
As a result of the clashes between Trump supporters and the authorities, Big Tech giants, including Facebook, are clamping down reporting from the capital. In a press release, Facebook said they will now be removing from its platform:
- Praise and support of the storming of the US Capitol.
- Calls to bring weapons to locations across the US – not just in Washington but anywhere in the US – including protests.
- Incitement or encouragement of the events at the Capitol, including videos and photos from the protestors.
- Calls for protests – even peaceful ones – if they violate the curfew in DC.
- Attempts to restage violence tomorrow or in the coming days.
Facebook said that posting photos or videos from the protests posted by attendees is tantamount to the “promotion of criminal activity,” which violates their policies. They are also adding additional checks to their platform, including:
- Increasing the requirement of Group admins to review and approve posts before they can go up.
- Automatically disabling comments on posts in Groups that start to have a high rate of hate speech or content that incites violence.
- Using AI to demote content that likely violates [their] policies.
The announcement from Facebook follows Twitter locking President Trump out of his account for 12 hours for “repeated and severe violations of [their] Civic Integrity Policy,” following the “unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C.” Twitter announced this on their official Twitter Safety account and threatened permanent suspension of if there are more “violations” from President Trump’s account.”
Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account.
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) January 7, 2021
Both Twitter and Facebook removed a video statement from President Trump calling on supporters to return home peacefully, claiming it would only inflame more violence.