Zuckerberg defends no action on Trump posts after Facebook walkout

Cheryl Sanders
June 3, 2020

Mark Zuckerberg is standing by his decision to allow Donald Trump to threaten violence against George Floyd protesters on the platform despite harsh criticism from civil rights leaders and public dissent from his own employees, including a public resignation.

That tweet threatened USA protesters with the ominous statement "When the looting starts, the shooting starts"-a phrase with troubling historical roots in state-sanctioned violence against black Americans".

Facebook declined to act on the same message, and Mr. Zuckerberg sought to distance his company from the fight between the President and Twitter.

Facebook employees on Monday began to speak out publicly against the company and staged a "virtual walkout" to protest Zuckerberg's inaction.

President Trump defended his comment later on Friday as well, saying "looting leads to shooting, and that's why a man was shot and killed in Minneapolis on Wednesday night", adding that only "haters" would take issue with it.


"Respect to @Twitter's integrity team for making the enforcement call", wrote David Gillis, identified as a director of product design.

Zuckerberg has defended his decision back then by saying that Trump's posts differ from threatening violence than 'state force.' The CEO also reiterated that POTUS had not violated any rules from their social media guidelines.

"There isn't a neutral position on racism".

Trump's confrontation with Twitter started after the company placed a warning on two of the president's tweets that made false claims about voting by mail.

"We have a different policy than, I think, Twitter on this", Zuckerberg told Fox News in an interview recorded after Twitter's decision and broadcast on May 28. He got elected because he ran the single best digital ad campaign I've ever seen from any advertiser. Even though Trump's order hasn't taken full effect, CDT said the mere existence of the policy could "chill" speech, undermining efforts by Facebook, Google and Twitter to ensure their platforms are used responsibly during the presidential race.


The backlash against big tech's ideological blind spot comes less than a week after Trump signed an executive order escalating his war with social media companies over how they monitor content.

"Our effectiveness has certainly been impacted by having less human review during COVID-19, and we do unfortunately expect to make more mistakes until we're able to ramp everything back up", Zuckerberg said.

As well, Facebook has banned some accounts and groups related to the QAnon political conspiracy theory, as well as those violating the site's terms by spreading coronavirus misinformation.

"Twitter appended the President's tweets... in immediate retaliation, the President issued the Executive Order", said the lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Technology companies blasted the move, saying it would stifle innovation and speech on the internet.


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