Facebook Relents Amid Growing Boycott

Agrees to remove posts that break rules, even those by President Trump
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 26, 2020 3:18 PM CDT
Facebook Relents, Will Flag Rule-Breaking Posts
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

The boycott appears to have worked. Facebook said Friday it will begin removing posts that it says incite violence or attempt to suppress voter turnout—even if they are from politicians including President Trump, reports the Washington Post. "There are no exceptions," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a town hall announcing the changes. It's a turnaround for Zuckerberg, who previously resisted taking down controversial Trump posts because the company deemed them newsworthy, per the AP. The new policies "are designed to address the reality of the challenges our country is facing and how they’re showing up across our community,” Zuckerberg wrote on his Facebook page.

As part of the changes, Facebook will start slapping labels on content that it deems questionable but allows to remain up under the "newsworthy" argument. But Zuckerberg emphasized that any post crossing the line on violence or voter suppression will not get that luxury. The move comes after shares of Facebook and Twitter dropped 7% when Unilever, the conglomerate behind brands such as Ben & Jerry's and Dove soap, said it would stop advertising on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram through the end of the year as a protest against online hate speech. At Slate, Aaron Mak writes that "a showdown between Facebook and President Donald Trump looks like it just became inevitable." (More Facebook stories.)

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