Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies remotely during a Senate Justice Committee hearing titled “Breaking the News: Censorship, Oppression, and the 2020 Election” on Capitol Hill in Washington, United States, Nov. 17. 2020.
Hannah McKay | Reuters
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Thursday the company would prevent President Donald Trump from accessing his account indefinitely and at least until President-elect Joe Biden took over the Oval Office.
“We believe that the risk that the president can continue to use our service during this time is simply too great,” Zuckerberg wrote in a post on his Facebook page.
Facebook will also prevent Trump from posting on his Instagram account over the same period, Zuckerberg said.
The decision came after Facebook announced on Wednesday that it would suspend Trump’s account for 24 hours to prevent him from posting on the service. Facebook’s own Instagram has also blocked Trump’s account from the service.
Twitter banned Trump’s account for 12 hours on Wednesday night, warning that if he continued to violate the company’s corporate integrity guidelines, it could banned him permanently. A spokesman for Twitter told CNBC on Thursday that Trump had now removed the offensive tweets, “and the 12-hour clock is running”. The lock was able to be removed around 3 p.m. ET.
Twitter declined to comment on whether it would also prevent Trump from posting to his account.
Here is Zuckerberg’s full post posted on his personal Facebook account:
The shocking events of the past 24 hours clearly show that President Donald Trump wants to use his remaining term in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transfer of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden.
His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters in the Capitol has rightly troubled people in the United States and around the world. We removed these statements yesterday because we judged that their effect – and likely their intent – is to provoke further violence.
Now that the election results have been confirmed by Congress, it must be a priority for the whole country to ensure that the remaining 13 days and the days after the inauguration are peaceful and in accordance with established democratic norms.
Over the past few years, we’ve allowed President Trump to use our platform according to our own rules, sometimes removing content or flagging his posts if it violates our guidelines. We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the widest possible access to political and even controversial language. However, the current context is radically different and includes using our platform to instigate violent uprisings against a democratically elected government.
We believe the risk that the president will continue to use our ministry during this time is just too great. Therefore, we are extending the block that we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful change of power is complete.
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