Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced that Facebook and Facebook-owned Instagram have banned President Donald Trump from using their social media platforms “indefinitely” — and certainly for at least the next two weeks.
The move comes a day after a rogue mass of Trump supporters violently stormed the U.S. Capitol. At least four people died, including one who was shot inside the Capitol, and dozens of people were arrested in Wednesday’s events.
What are the details?
In a Thursday Facebook post, Zuckerberg wrote, “The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden.
“His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters at the Capitol building has rightly disturbed people in the US and around the world,” the Facebook CEO continued. “We removed these statements yesterday because we judged that their effect — and likely their intent — would be to provoke further violence.
“Following the certification of the election results by Congress, the priority for the whole country must now be to ensure that the remaining 13 days and the days after inauguration pass peacefully and in accordance with established democratic norms,” the post continued.
As such, Zuckerberg noted that the company has, for the most part, permitted Trump to freely engage in discussion and discourse on social media.
“Over the last several years, we have allowed President Trump to use our platform consistent with our own rules, at times removing content or labeling his posts when they violate our policies. We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the broadest possible access to political speech, even controversial speech,” he explained. “But the current context is now fundamentally different, involving use of our platform to incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government.”
Zuckerberg pointed out that the “risks” of permitting Trump to post on social media at this time are “simply too great.”
“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great,” the post concluded. “Therefore, we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete.”