New York Times: Facebook may censor President Trump if he questions election results
New York Times claims top Facebook executives meet regularly to discuss how to deal with President Trump in the event he tries to challenge a close election.
The Times reported Friday of Facebook’s plans with only contingencies for dealing with Trump challenging the election, but not Biden:
“Employees at the Silicon Valley company are laying out contingency plans and walking through postelection scenarios that include attempts by Mr. Trump or his campaign to use the platform to delegitimize the results, people with knowledge of Facebook’s plans said.”
Without explaining why only Trump would be monitored and possibly censored, the Times stated:
“Facebook is preparing steps to take should Mr. Trump wrongly claim on the site that he won another four-year term, said the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Facebook is also working through how it might act if Mr. Trump tries to invalidate the results by declaring that the Postal Service lost mail-in ballots or that other groups meddled with the vote, the people said.”
The Times says that Facebook might use a “kill switch” to turn off Trump’s access after the election in order to quell “misinformation.”
Quoting Alex Stamos, a former Facebook executive and current head of the Stanford University Internet Observatory, the Times admits that Trump is being singled out for this treatment:
“Facebook, Twitter and YouTube faced a singular situation where they ‘have to potentially treat the president as a bad actor’ who could undermine the democratic process.”
The Times provides vague reasoning for singling out Trump. Those reasons range from the President’s criticism of mail-in-balloting to what the Times says is his inaccurate posts on social media.
Stamos told the Times, “We don’t have experience with that in the United States,” without regard to the fact that Democrats challenged the 2000 election. In addition, Democrats engaged in an aggressive effort to delegitimize the 2016 election, a tactic that is ongoing.
Citing earlier reporting by Buzzfeed, the Times stated:
“Of Mr. Trump, Mr. Zuckerberg said the company was ‘in unprecedented territory with the president saying some of the things that he’s saying that I find quite troubling.’” Social media companies have come under intense scrutiny from conservative groups who say that Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and others, allow half-truths and disinformation from Democrats to be promoted while censoring legitimate conservative information and news.
PHOTO: Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian
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