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Meta, the company that owns Facebook and Instagram, announced this Wednesday that it will lift the ban on Donald Trump “in the coming weeks.” The former president had been banned from both social networks for a little over two years, as a result of the attack on the Capitol and also of his behavior during the weeks between the presidential elections, which he lost to Joe Biden, and on January 6, 2021, a black day for American democracy in which a mob of its followers stormed Congress at the end of one of its rallies in Washington to interrupt the peaceful transfer of power.
“Our conviction is that the risk [que representaba Trump] it has diminished enough”, said its president of Global Affairs, Nick Clegg, in a post on the Meta blog. “For that reason, we will be reinstating Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks. We will accompany this decision with new protection measures to discourage him from repeating his behavior ”.
Before they closed the door on him, Trump had the account with the most Facebook followers: 34 million, compared to the 23 he accumulated on Instagram.
He was also fired from Twitter, a platform on which he earned the nickname of “tweeter in chief” during his presidency, but at that club they had already re-admitted him at the end of the year, after the magnate Elon Musk bought the social network. At the moment, the former president has not used one of his favorite speakers again: following his expulsion from Twitter, he created his own social network, Truth Social. With the latter, he binds her to an exclusivity contract, which obliges her to share his messages for at least six hours before running to do it elsewhere. In addition, he invested in it, and everything suggests that if he stopped using it in the way he has done up to now, the company’s value would plummet irretrievably.
Trump reacted on Truth Social shortly after the news broke. He said of Meta that “he has lost billions of dollars in value since he ‘removed’ your favorite president, me,” and that such a suspension “should never happen again to a sitting president.” Also: “THE GROWTH of Truth Social IS EXTRAORDINARY AND THE FUTURE, LIMITLESS!!!”. [Las mayúsculas, como de costumbre, son suyas].
“The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying, the good, the bad and the ugly, so that they can make informed decisions at the polls,” Clegg, who was deputy prime minister of the United Kingdom in the David Cameron Times in Downing Street. “But that doesn’t mean there aren’t limits to what people can say on our platform. When there is a clear risk of harm in the real world, a deliberately high bar for Meta to intervene in public discourse, we act.”
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It is not clear if Trump, who in November announced his third candidacy for the White House for the 2024 elections, intends to resume his activity on Facebook and Instagram, powerful platforms to spread his campaign messages. The terms of your exclusive contract with Truth Social, contained in a document registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), include a proviso for cases in which the messages have to do with fundraising or with initiatives to promote voting.
In Wednesday’s post, Clegg promised that Meta’s updated protocol is ready to prevent “the kind of risk that materialized on January 6.” “We can limit the distribution of those publications [de contenido peligroso] and, in case of recurrence, we can temporarily restrict access to our advertising tools. This step would mean that the content would remain viewable on Trump’s account, but would not be distributed to users, including those who follow Trump. We may also remove the share button from such posts, and we may prevent them from being recommended or served as ads,” he added.
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