Meta is expanding the range of interventions it can use to combat the dangerous rhetoric of Trump and other public figures by taking new measures to reduce the visibility of provocative posts, The Washington Post reports.
For months, the tech giant has been at the center of a wide-ranging debate about how world leaders who post problematic content should be dealt with. Democrats and progressive groups have called on Meta to extend Trump’s suspension, arguing that his habit of spreading false accusations of election fraud is dangerous. Some free speech activists argue that a politician like Trump deserves a platform on the country’s most popular social networks.
Meta Global Affairs President Nick Clegg has categorically stated that the company does not want to interfere in the democratic process, but that there should be limits on what politicians can publish.
“The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying — the good, the bad and the ugly — so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box. But that does not mean there are no limits to what people can say on our platform. When there is a clear risk of real world harm — a deliberately high bar for Meta to intervene in public discourse — we act.”
he wrote in a blog post.
Under Meta’s new rules, accounts that have been banned once will be subject to stricter measures for repeat offenses or posts that cause real-world harm. Meta also includes government officials, politicians and users with more than 1 million followers can be suspended for a first offense from one month to two years depending on the severity of the violation.
Meta also introduced new remedies for posts by public figures who have been suspended that do not violate company policy but could lead to harmful events.
Some scholars argue that social media platforms shouldn’t just decide whether to take something down, but can give public figures the ability to post problematic content while not allowing it to be shared with a large audience, The Washington Post reports further on the topic.