Donald Trump was waiting for this moment.
Ever since January he wondered if it would come.
And Donald Trump was grinning from ear to ear when he got this news about reinstatement.
Facebook’s Vice President of Global Affairs Nick Clegg announced that Donald Trump’s suspension from the platform would lift on January 7, 2023.
“We are today announcing new enforcement protocols to be applied in exceptional cases such as this, and we are confirming the time-bound penalty consistent with those protocols which we are applying to Mr. Trump’s accounts. Given the gravity of the circumstances that led to Mr. Trump’s suspension, we believe his actions constituted a severe violation of our rules which merit the highest penalty available under the new enforcement protocols. We are suspending his accounts for two years, effective from the date of the initial suspension on January 7 this year,” Clegg stated.
This move opened the door to Donald Trump to run for president again in 2024 as another campaign would likely be impossible without access to Facebook’s mass audience for ads, messaging communications and fundraising.
As if to prove that Facebook really called the shots as to who gets to run for president, Clegg decreed that Trump’s suspension ending would not automatically lift on January 7 and that Facebook could still extend the ban should the social media giant conjure up some fear of insurrectionist Trump supporters taking to the streets in response.
“At the end of this period, we will look to experts to assess whether the risk to public safety has receded. We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly and other markers of civil unrest. 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,” Clegg added.
Clegg added that Trump will be held to the same standard as regular users meaning Facebook could censor him in an instant just for being a conservative.
“When the suspension is eventually lifted, there will be a strict set of rapidly escalating sanctions that will be triggered if Mr. Trump commits further violations in future, up to and including permanent removal of his pages and accounts,” Clegg continued.
Donald Trump was the president of the United States.
Facebook is a social media company.
But this announcement by Facebook made it clear who was more powerful.
Rush Limbaugh’s replacement, Clay Travis, spoke for many when he worried what this episode revealed about how Facebook’s power and dominance rivaled that of the Communist Chinese government.
“Facebook has upheld its ban of President Trump for the next two years. Regardless of your politics this should be chilling. We’ve effectively turned American big tech censorship into our version of China’s governmental censorship,” Travis wrote.
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