President Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts have been reinstated, according to a company spokesperson.
UPDATE – Meta has restored access Trump's access to Facebook and Instagram both, spokesperson confirmed, Reuters reports.
Now when do I get my 1.5M Trump Fan Page back???
— DailyNoah.com (@DailyNoahNews) February 9, 2023
Meta restores Trump's Facebook, Instagram accounts https://t.co/Iyk01aEVJu
— Fox News (@FoxNews) February 9, 2023
Andy Stone, policy communications director at Meta, confirmed the news to NBC News.
NEW: Former President Trump's Facebook and Instagram accounts have been reinstated, a Meta spokesperson says.https://t.co/Vf68JeHNaJ
— NBC News (@NBCNews) February 9, 2023
Per NBC News:
Facebook first suspended Trump’s accounts in the aftermath of the Jan. 6 attack, initially as an indefinite ban that included the last two weeks of his presidency. The ban was then formally extended for two years.
NBC News reported in January that the company, which is now called Meta and includes Facebook, Instagram and other platforms including WhatsApp, had decided to reinstate Trump’s accounts while also including “new guardrails” meant to provide clear rules “to deter repeat offenses.”
That sounds like a code name for censorship.
More info on these “guardrails” at Meta:
To assess whether the serious risk to public safety that existed in January 2021 has sufficiently receded, we have evaluated the current environment according to our Crisis Policy Protocol, which included looking at the conduct of the US 2022 midterm elections, and expert assessments on the current security environment. Our determination is that the risk has sufficiently receded, and that we should therefore adhere to the two-year timeline we set out. As such, we will be reinstating Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks. However, we are doing so with new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses.
Like any other Facebook or Instagram user, Mr. Trump is subject to our Community Standards. In light of his violations, he now also faces heightened penalties for repeat offenses — penalties which will apply to other public figures whose accounts are reinstated from suspensions related to civil unrest under our updated protocol. In the event that Mr. Trump posts further violating content, the content will be removed and he will be suspended for between one month and two years, depending on the severity of the violation.
Our updated protocol also addresses content that does not violate our Community Standards but that contributes to the sort of risk that materialized on January 6, such as content that delegitimizes an upcoming election or is related to QAnon. We may limit the distribution of such posts, and for repeated instances, may temporarily restrict access to our advertising tools. This step would mean that content would remain visible on Mr. Trump’s account but would not be distributed in people’s Feeds, even if they follow Mr. Trump. We may also remove the reshare button from such posts, and may stop them being recommended or run as ads. In the event that Mr. Trump posts content that violates the letter of the Community Standards but, under our newsworthy content policy, we assess there is a public interest in knowing that Mr. Trump made the statement that outweighs any potential harm, we may similarly opt to restrict the distribution of such posts but leave them visible on Mr. Trump’s account. We are taking these steps in light of the Oversight Board’s emphasis on high-reach and influential users and its emphasis on Meta’s role “to create necessary and proportionate penalties that respond to severe violations of its content policies.”
There is a significant debate about how social media companies should approach content posted on their platforms. Many people believe that companies like Meta should remove much more content than we currently do. Others argue that our current policies already make us overbearing censors. The fact is people will always say all kinds of things on the internet. We default to letting people speak, even when what they have to say is distasteful or factually wrong. Democracy is messy and people should be able to make their voices heard. We believe it is both necessary and possible to draw a line between content that is harmful and should be removed, and content that, however distasteful or inaccurate, is part of the rough and tumble of life in a free society.
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