Facebook, Instagram Block Trump for 24 Hours

The platform removed Trump’s latest post supporting MAGA rioters

Last Updated: January 6, 2021 @ 6:20 PM

Facebook and Instagram have blocked Donald Trump from posting on his page for 24 hours, the company said on Wednesday.

“We’ve assessed two policy violations against President Trump’s Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time,” the Facebook Newsroom Twitter account said.

Facebook also removed Trump’s latest post, in which he expressed his support for the MAGA rioters that stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, calling them “great patriots.”

In a public memo, Guy Rosen and Monika Bickert — Facebook’s vice president of integrity and vice president of global policy management, respectively — said Facebook’s leadership team was “appalled by the violence at the Capitol.”

“We are locking President Trump’s Instagram account for 24 hours as well,” Instagram’s Adam Mosseri said.

The memo also outlined the type of content that the company would be searching for and removing:

  • Praise and support of the storming of the US Capitol
  • Calls to bring weapons to locations across the US — not just in Washington but anywhere in the US — including protests 
  • Incitement or encouragement of the events at the Capitol, including videos and photos from the protestors. At this point they represent promotion of criminal activity which violates our policies.
  • Calls for protests — even peaceful ones — if they violate the curfew in DC 
  • Attempts to restage violence tomorrow or in the coming days

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg also told employees in a separate internal memo that he was “personally saddened by this mob” and that Facebook was “treating this situation as an emergency.”

“The peaceful transition of power is critical to the functioning of our democracy, and we need our political leaders to lead by example and put the nation first,” Zuckerberg wrote.

The move comes shortly after Twitter said it would require the deletion of three of his tweets that violated company policies and would lock his account for 12 hours after the tweets were removed.

“If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked,” Twitter said. “Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account.”