Donald Trump Won’t Be Fact-Checked On Facebook Anymore After Presidential Bid Announcement
Other than its obvious dangers, there’s another red flag attached to Donald Trump’s 2024 bid to return to the White House: Facebook won’t be able to fact-check him anymore, two long years before the presidential election.
The former president, who’s been banned on Facebook and Twitter for spreading falsehoods, announced his bid to represent the GOP in the 2024 presidential election on Tuesday. His announcement triggers a long-standing fact-checking exemption, according to a memo from Meta seen by CNN, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram.
Meta doesn’t fact-check politicians. “It is not our role to intervene when politicians speak,” said Meta’s President of Global Affairs Nick Clegg in 2019, who was previously a politician, once serving as the United Kingdom’s Deputy Prime Minister.
The company outsources fact-checking to a third-party provider, and in the memo, they note that “political speech is ineligible for fact-checking. This includes the words a politician says as well as photo, video, or other content that is clearly labeled as created by the politician or their campaign.”
The moment that Trump announced his plans for candidacy he was considered a politician and therefore could no longer be fact-checked, per Meta’s policy, regardless of if Trump hasn’t formally registered with the Federal Election Commission.
“We define a ‘politician’ as candidates running for office, current office holders – and, by extension, many of their cabinet appointees – along with political parties and their leaders,” according to the memo.
The exemption will apply to everything that Trump says posted by others on the social media platform. And while he himself can not post on his account on Meta’s platforms, “Team Trump,” a Facebook page run by Trump’s political group, is currently active and has 2.3 million followers.
Trump has been banned from Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter since shortly after the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol. But Meta is reportedly considering allowing him back on the platform by January next year.
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