Trump's Post Censored on Twitter and Facebook

Max Dugan | October 6, 2020
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After recovering from the Coronavirus, Trump took to Facebook and Twitter again only to have one of his tweets regarding the virus deleted by Facebook and hidden by Twitter.

In the post, Trump claimed that sometimes as many as 100,000 people die of the flu during a flu season in spite of there being a vaccine. He followed up by saying that we should not close down the country, because we have learned to live with the flu just as we are learning to live with COVID: 

 

According to the CDC, the flu seasons of 1968 resulted in roughly 100,000 deaths, the flu season of 1957 resulted in 116,000 deaths and the Spanish Flu of 1918 resulted in 675,000 deaths.

The president's tweet was hidden by Twitter because it "violated the Twitter Rules about spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19." The tweet was not entirely deleted, however, due to Twitter determining "that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible." Instead the tweet has simply been flagged and left in a tweet limbo, able to be viewed by the public when clicked on, but not able to be shared, liked, or commented on.

Facebook decided to delete Trump's comment outright, with Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone confirming that the comment was deleted for violating its rule regarding COVID misinformation stating, "We remove incorrect information about the severity of Covid-19, and have now removed this post." 

Later that afternoon, Trump tweeted simply, "REPEAL SECTION 230!!!" seemingly in response to such censorship. This is of course in reference to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act which essentially stipulates that social media platforms cannot be held responsible as publishers for the content of their users, protecting social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter from a range of laws. 

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