“Unless government prohibits the event during this time, we allow it to be organized on Facebook”
Lockdown protests are popping up all over the country. Often used as an organizational tool for grassroots activity, Facebook is prohibiting the use of its platform to organize events or get togethers that defy government orders.
That said, not all lockdown protests are disallowed from organizing on Facebook. Only those that directly defy social distancing and shelter in place orders.
Reason has more:
Facebook will remove coronavirus-related misinformation that directly threatens imminent harm, CEO Mark Zuckerberg told ABC News. But contrary to several media reports, Facebook is not taking action against all lockdown protests that are being organized on the site.
“Unless government prohibits the event during this time, we allow it to be organized on Facebook,” a company spokesperson tells Reason. “For this same reason, events that defy government’s guidance on social distancing aren’t allowed on Facebook.”
This is slightly but critically different from what was reported by The Hill, which made it sound like Zuckerberg had endorsed some kind of blanket ban on anti-lockdown activism:
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that protests against stay-at-home orders organized through his social media site qualify as “harmful misinformation” and are taken down.
…At the behest of state governments, Facebook has indeed taken action against some anti-quarantine protests being organized on the site. But that’s because those events were being organized in direct violation of state social distancing dictates, Facebook says. It matters what each state’s guidance has been, and it matters whether the event in question is urging participants to take appropriate precautions.
That’s markedly different from the idea that all opposition to the lockdowns is being treated as harmful misinformation.
…which is noticeably different from how Politico chose to cover this issue:
Anyway, Don Jr. jumped into the story, criticizing Facebook for working with state and local governments:
Why is @Facebook colluding with state governments to quash peoples free speech?
Regardless of what you think about the lockdowns or the protests against them, this is a chilling & disturbing government directed shutdown of peoples 1st Amendment rights. Very dangerous! https://t.co/rnG09TSVhI
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) April 20, 2020
[Insert diatribe about Facebook being private enterprise than operate as they wish and also the chilling effect of massive speech platforms actively working with the government to quell the right of assembly.]DONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.