On Wednesday, Meta announced that President Donald Trump will be allowed back on Instagram and Facebook after a 2-year-long ban. However, there will be “new guardrails” in place so the social media companies can maintain some control over Trump’s posts.
In a statement, Nick Clegg, Meta’s President for Global Affairs, announced the reactivation of Trump’s accounts.
“Social media is rooted in the belief that open debate and the free flow of ideas are important values, especially at a time when they are under threat in many places around the world,” began Clegg’s statement. “As a general rule, we don’t want to get in the way of open, public and democratic debate on Meta’s platforms – especially in the context of elections in democratic societies like the United States.”
“The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying – the good, the bad and the ugly – so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box,” Clegg continued. “But that does not mean there are no limits to what people can say on our platform.”
He noted that his company has determined that the “risk” posed by Trump “has sufficiently receded,” and that they “will be reinstating Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks.”
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“However, we are doing so with new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses,” added Clegg.
Specifying what he means by “guardrails,” Clegg said, “Like any other Facebook or Instagram user, Mr. Trump is subject to our Community Standards… he now also faces heightened penalties for repeat offenses – penalties which will apply to other public figures whose accounts are reinstated from suspensions related to civil unrest under our updated protocol.”
Clegg adds that Meta will not “limit the distribution” of posts that “contribute to the sort of risk that materialized on January 6, such as content that delegitimizes an upcoming election.”
Trump responded to Meta’s announcement on the social media platform Truth Social, saying,
“FACEBOOK, which has lost Billions of Dollars in value since “deplatforming” your favorite President, me, has just announced that they are reinstating my account. Such a thing should never again happen to a sitting President, or anybody else who is not deserving of retribution! THANK YOU TO TRUTH SOCIAL FOR DOING SUCH AN INCREDIBLE JOB. YOUR GROWTH IS OUTSTANDING, AND FUTURE UNLIMITED!!!”