AMERICA—Facebook and Twitter deleted some of President Trump’s posts regarding COVID-19 because they were in violation of COVID-19 information policies.
Facebook removed President Trump’s post, which included video explaining that children were “almost immune from COVID-19” during an appearance of his on Fox News. The video stated that children show milder symptoms of the coronavirus than adults. “This video includes false claims that a group of people is immune from COVID-19 which is a violation of our policies around harmful COVID misinformation,” said Andy Stone a spokesperson for Facebook.
On Wednesday, August 5, Twitter temporarily blocked the Trump election campaign account when the video was released on Fox News. Trenton Kennedy, a spokesperson of Twitter, announced, “The @TeamTrump Tweet you referenced is in violation of the Twitter Rules on COVID-19 misinformation. The account owner will be required to remove the Tweet before they can Tweet again.”
After being warned by two major social media apps, Courtney Parella, a spokesperson for the Trump Campaign, commented, “The President was stating a fact that children are less susceptible to the coronavirus. Another day, another display of Silicon Valley’s flagrant bias against this President, where the rules are only enforced in one direction. Social media companies are not the arbiters of truth.”
Facebook has received pressure from its employees and civil rights groups that Facebook’s rules do not thoroughly address hate speech and misinformation. Twitter has been adopting fact-checking regulation, using warning labels to censor the President’s tweets, and forbidding political advertising that glorifies violence.