Facebook banned President Trump’s account following the attack at the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. where rioters approached and entered the Capitol building, clashing and attacking police in the process. 

“[President Trump’s] 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 CEO Mark Zuckerberg said. 

Facebook also removed posts that Trump made just prior to the account ban. 

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

A video message that Trump posted regarding the situation at the Capitol was removed from his account as well. 

“This is an emergency situation and we are taking appropriate emergency measures, including removing President Trump’s video. We removed it because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence,” Facebook executive Guy Rosen said.

In the video message, which is currently still up on NBC Montana’s Facebook page, President Trump said

“…We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election and everyone knows it, especially the other side. But you have to go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order… We love you, you’re very special. We’ve seen what happens, you see the way others are treated that are so bad and so evil. I know how you feel. But go home, and go home in peace.”

Zuckerberg also stated that in light of the recent events at the Capitol, he believes the risks that come with allowing President Trump to use the Facebook platform are too great at this time. 

“We are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete,” Zuckerberg said. 

The latest ban is not the first time Facebook has taken action regarding President Trump’s account. 

“Over the last several years, we have allowed President Trump to use our platform consistent with our own rules, at times removing content or labeling his posts when they violate our policies. We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the broadest possible access to political speech, even controversial speech,” Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg further explained the justification for the more severe penalty of an account ban, rather than just the removal of specific posts, adding “But the current context is now fundamentally different, involving use of our platform to incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government.”

Twitter initially banned President Trump’s account on Jan. 6. The ban was intended to last for 12 hours, but Twitter instead decided to permanently suspend the account.  

The Twitter ban was enacted as a result of multiple tweets from the President allegedly breaking Twitter’s Glorification of Violence policy

“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence, ” Twitter said

Twitter broke down an overview and assessment of the most recent Tweets that led to President Trump’s permanent suspension. It is unclear as to if, or when, Twitter will reactivate the account.  

“Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open…we made it clear going back years that these accounts are not above our rules entirely and cannot use Twitter to incite violence, among other things.”

Many Twitter users on the right said they’re losing thousands of followers in what they’re calling the “conservative purge.” The question of if the ban violates the First Amendment remains a discussion on the public forum.

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Written ByLinn Win

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