Thursday, January 07, 2021
Platforms take hold
Twitter and Facebook block Trump’s accounts
Just a few hours after the riots in Washington, Facebook and Twitter are getting serious: The online platforms have blocked Donald Trump for several hours for violating the guidelines. On Twitter, the lock could even be permanent if Trump does not give in.
After the riots at the Capitol in Washington, Facebook and Twitter temporarily banned the elected US President Donald Trump from their platforms. Facebook banned Trump for 24 hours. The outgoing head of state violated the rules of the online network with two posts, said a Facebook spokesman. Twitter had previously blocked Trump for an initial twelve hours. Three tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account had “repeatedly and seriously” violated the platform’s guidelines and would have to be deleted, said Twitter. If Trump does not remove them, the account will remain permanently blocked, it said.
Among other things, a video was affected in which Trump called on his supporters to withdraw from the Capitol they stormed – but at the same time repeated his unsubstantiated claims about alleged election fraud. Youtube also blocked the corresponding video. Facebook justified this with the fear that Trump’s message could lead to further violence.
In particular, Twitter has so far limited itself to warning notices for Trump because the service regards the President’s contributions as historical documents. Now, after the video, the service immediately blocked another contribution from Trump, in which he wrote: “These are things and events that happen when a holy landslide victory is stolen so suddenly and meanly”. Trump’s supporters had previously stormed the House of Parliament in Washington while deliberations were under way there to confirm the election victory of his successor Joe Biden.
At first, Twitter only provided both Trump’s posts with warnings and restricted their distribution on the platform. Tweets that could lead to violence cannot be retweeted, replied to or given a “like”. At the same time, demands were made on Twitter to ban Trump from the platform at least temporarily.
In the past few months, Facebook and Twitter had warned Trump of false information on numerous posts and in some cases also restricted their distribution. The outgoing president then accused the platforms of political censorship.