“Facebook’s ruling on former President Donald Trump is just the latest evidence that Big Tech wields far too much power,” Media Research Center President L. Brent Bozell declared. “Leftist Facebook executives weren’t satisfied with interfering with the 2020 election. Now, they want to interfere with the 2024 campaign by knee-capping Trump before he can even get started.”
Former President Donald Trump will be suspended from Facebook for at least two years, Facebook announced. Additionally, it decided to change the way it moderates speech from public figures in a massive blow to free speech online.
Facebook said the effective start date for the suspension of Trump’s account began “the date of the initial suspension on January 7 this year,” Facebook VP of Global Affairs Nick Clegg said in a company blog post. Facebook also discussed new rules regarding “Heightened Penalties for Public Figures During Times of Civil Unrest and Ongoing Violence.”
Bozell blasted the censorship, further stating in a tweet that “Facebook’s new policy for politicians sets itself as the sole ruling body determining who can campaign to its nearly three billion customers. Americans need to prove to Big Tech that we are more powerful than they are while we still can.”
The platform, in continuing to censor Trump, absurdly concluded that it is still convinced Trump’s calls for “peace” during the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol constituted a “risk to public safety.” Clegg said in the Facebook statement: “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.”
It is unclear whether the platform will allow Trump to return even after the two-year suspension has ended. “[W]e will look to experts to assess whether the risk to public safety has receded,” Clegg wrote in the company blog. “We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly and other markers of civil unrest.” Twitter, meanwhile, has refused to allow Trump back on its platform.
Facebook even admitted that people on both the right and the left will be unhappy with its decision. “We know today’s decision will be criticized by many people on opposing sides of the political divide,” the company noted.
Trump also weighed in on Facebook’s decision. “Facebook’s ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75M people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 Rigged Presidential Election,” he said in a statement. “They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our Country can’t take this abuse anymore!”
The platform also discussed its plans to increase transparency into its censorship policies moving forward:
“We are also committing to being more transparent about the decisions we make and how they impact our users. As well as our updated enforcement protocols, we are also publishing our strike system, so that people know what actions our systems will take if they violate our policies.”
The announcement followed the Oversight Board’s decision in May to at least temporarily uphold Facebook’s ban of Trump. The Board insisted Facebook review the decision within six months. Previously, Clegg said that “we will treat speech from politicians as newsworthy content that should, as a general rule, be seen and heard.” However, Facebook has now made it clear that is no longer the case.
Conservatives are under attack. Contact Facebook headquarters at 1-650-308-7300 and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.