Facebook announced Thursday afternoon May 2, 2019 that several high-profile personalities will be purged from its platforms.
Among the personalities, 1) Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who’s notorious for using anti-Semitic language, and 2) right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, labeled as “dangerous” and said it will be purging them from its platforms.
Jones and his media outlet InfoWars had previously been banned from Facebook in August 2018, but had still had an active account on Instagram, which Facebook also owns and manages. On Thursday, Jones and InfoWars will also be barred from Instagram.
Other people banned Thursday include fringe right-wing media personalities …
Laura Loomer, a far right political activist once associated with Project Veritas;
Paul Nehlen, an alleged anti-Semite who unsuccessfully ran for Congress in 2016 and 2018;
Milo Yiannopoulos ( a former editor for Breitbart News who describes himself as a “cultural libertarian” and was previously banned from Twitter); and
Paul Joseph Watson, labeled as an ‘alt right’ conspiracy theorist, and YouTube personality.
“We’ve always banned individuals or organizations that promote or engage in violence and hate, regardless of ideology,” a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement provided to CNN Business. “The process for evaluating potential violators is extensive and it is what led us to our decision to remove these accounts today.”
A Facebook reported the company goes through a lengthy process and takes into consideration a number of factors before determining an individual to be “dangerous,” including …
whether the person or organization has ever called for violence against individuals based on race, ethnicity, or national origin;
whether the person has been identified with a hateful ideology;
whether they use hate speech or slurs in their “About Section” on their social media profiles;
and whether they have had pages or groups removed from Facebook for violating hate speech rules.
When Facebook bans an individual or organization, it may or may not also restrict others from expressing praise or support for the banned personalities, according to Facebook.
According to the social media company, Facebook will also remove groups, pages and accounts created to represent the banned individuals when it knows the individual is using Facebook to participate in an effort.
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