Facebook has suspended the social media account of former President Donald Trump. His suspension will be reviewed in two years, and he might be reinstated on January 7, 2023, if he no longer constitutes a security risk to the public. The social media giant first suspended Trump on January 7 after he was fingered for inciting the Capitol riot and invasion, CNN writes.
The suspension means Trump will not be able to post on his Facebook accounts and pages which have several millions of followers. Given that the suspension will be reviewed in 2023, it is possible that it be lifted before the 2024 presidential election if Trump satisfies the scrutiny of Facebook managers.
Vice president for global affairs at Facebook, Nick Clegg, said the social media giant will consider the assessment of experts in determining if Trump’s “risk to public safety has receded” once the two years suspension is fulfilled.
“We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly, and other markers of civil unrest,” Clegg said. “If we determine that there is still a serious risk to public safety, we will extend the restriction for a set period of time and continue to re-evaluate until that risk has receded.”
He further noted that the two-year suspension should be long enough to deter Trump and others in positions of political authority from “committing such severe violations [incitements of violence] in future”. He added that new “enforcement protocols” will also be implemented so that Facebook users would be mindful of the effects of their posts on the entire community.
Clegg said the former president’s Facebook pages and accounts will be permanently removed from the platform if he commits further infractions in the future after he is reinstated at the end of his suspension. But Trump condemned the social media platform for the decision, saying they have just insulted millions of voters and should (Facebook) not be allowed to get away with the decision.
“Facebook’s ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75 (million) people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 Rigged Presidential Election,” Trump wrote in a statement. “They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our country can’t take this abuse anymore!”
The former president also swore that there won’t be any more dinners for Mark Zuckerberg and his wife in the White House and that everything will be business between them. White House press secretary Jennifer Psaki told reporters that it is the responsibility of all social media platforms to crack down on all types of disinformation – whether it is about the election or the vaccines.
“We learned a lot from President Trump, the former president, over the last couple of years about his behavior and how he uses these platforms,” Psaki stated. “Feels pretty unlikely that the zebra is going to change his stripes over the next two years. We’ll see.”