Donald Trump’s Facebook, Instagram Accounts Officially Reinstated
Donald Trump has officially regained access to his Facebook and Instagram accounts, parent company Meta confirmed on Thursday. The announcement comes a full two years after the president was banned. In January, Nick Clegg, Meta’s President of Global Affairs, stated that his company was planning to reinstate the accounts.
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“Two years ago, we took action in what were extreme and highly unusual circumstances,” Clegg wrote. We indefinitely suspended then-US President Donald Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts following his praise for people engaged in violence at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.”
Clegg, a former Deputy Prime Minister of the U.K., found his way to Meta Platforms as a senior executive in 2018. He has vigorously defended his company’s decision to censor the 45th president over the years, repeating the claim that Trump incited the violence of January 6. Trump’s final Facebook post before the ban reads,
“I am asking for everyone at the U.S. Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! Remember, WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue. Thank you!”
Clegg wrote that they would be reinstating Trump’s Instagram and Facebook accounts but would be doing so with “new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses.” He then presented a laundry list of future actions the company might take to manipulate the reach of Trump’s posts.
“Our updated protocol also addresses content that does not violate our Community Standards but that contributes to the sort of risk that materialized on January 6, such as content that delegitimizes an upcoming election or is related to QAnon. We may limit the distribution of such posts, and for repeated instances, may temporarily restrict access to our advertising tools. This step would mean that content would remain visible on Mr. Trump’s account but would not be distributed in people’s Feeds, even if they follow Mr. Trump.”
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The statement continued,
“We may also remove the reshare button from such posts, and may stop them being recommended or run as ads. In the event that Mr. Trump posts content that violates the letter of the Community Standards but, under our newsworthy content policy, we assess there is a public interest in knowing that Mr. Trump made the statement that outweighs any potential harm, we may similarly opt to restrict the distribution of such posts but leave them visible on Mr. Trump’s account.”
Clegg said that they would assess each case based on the guidance of the company’s “Oversight Board.” He also threatened that Meta might institute further bans ranging between one month and two years depending on the content of each post.
The reinstatement of Trump’s social media accounts comes during a mounting comeback bid for the White House. Since his announcement in November, Trump has been actively campaigning for the Republican nomination, recently traveling to New Hampshire and South Carolina. However, he has not signaled any intention to return to Facebook or Instagram.
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After Trump’s reinstatement to Twitter by Elon Musk three months ago, the former president said he did not want to return to the platform. So far, he has kept his promise, preferring to communicate with followers through his proprietary Truth Social.
Trump’s campaign, however, had actively petitioned the social media giants to restore the accounts, leaving Trump’s next move open to speculation.
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