In May, after Trump called for violence against protesters, Twitter took (mild) action. More companies acted after the president retweeted, and later removed, a video in which someone yelled “white power,” and more than 20 companies boycotted Facebook because it let Trump spread .
Some companies banned groups that support the president. Others took action against the president’s account. They probably won’t be the last. As with Alex Jones’ mass deplatforming in 2018, when the dominoes in a social media empire begin to fall, they all fall at once.
Here are the actions social platforms have taken against Trump accounts and groups so far.
The president’s social media platform of choice ironically led the charge when it came to articulating and enforcing new policies against hate speech. Its overall policy is not to remove Trump’s account or content, but to flag content that violates its policies against misinformation, hate speech, modified media, and presumably more.
In May, it fact-checked two of Trump’s tweets that contained misinformation about absentee voting. Days later, it hid a tweet glorifying violence against Black Lives Matter protesters. Most recently, it put a label on a fake video that Trump tweeted classifying it as “manipulated media.”
The ephemeral content platform is allowing Trump’s account to remain on Snapchat, but is drawing a line when it comes to promoting that content. Snapchat announced that it would no longer feature Trump’s content in its Discover section, which is a curated content portal that Snapchat wants to be hate-free. Snapchat clarified that the president’s off-platform actions — presumably, his Tweets and Facebook posts glorifying violence, and his tear-gassing of protesters for the sake of a photo-op — inspired the decision.
The community forum site announced a new policy against hate and violence Monday, which it accompanied with the removal of 2,000 subreddits that routinely host content that violates its rules.
The highest profile subreddit to get the axe? r/The_Donald, a subreddit in dedicated to President Trump that was a cesspool of alt-right racism and misinformation. That’s a reverse from Reddit’s 2018 policy in which it deemed racism A-OK.
The streaming platform levied a temporary ban against Trump’s Twitch channel for “hateful conduct” Monday. Twitch banned Trump for posting his infamous racist comments about Mexican immigrants, including his campaign speech from 2016 in which he called them “rapists.”
What About Facebook?
However, as more and more brands signed on to the ads boycott, Facebook announced Friday an incremental, and so far untested, change. The social network said it will allow some content that violates its policies (including hate speech) to remain on the site if it’s “newsworthy” (i.e., posted by a prominent politician like Trump). However, it will also append a label saying the post violates its policies. It’s not clear how often it will do this, and what the process will be for identifying and labeling these posts. Calling the new policy unclear is an understatement.
This story is developing…