Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would ban President Donald Trump “indefinitely” after Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol this week.
“The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden,” Zuckerberg wrote.
“We are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete.”
“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great,” the Facebook Newsroom added.
The decision to ban Trump marked the most aggressive penalty that any social media company has meted out to moderate his posts.
On Wednesday evening, Twitter suspended Trump for 12 hours for the first time, but the company’s blockade lifted Thursday morning — and the president had not yet tweeted.
Facebook, Twitter and Google-owned YouTube have faced sharp criticism after allegedly failing to act until after the deadly riot occurred, and was told they should have done more, and sooner, to stop Trump from helping provoke the situation.
During the Capitol riot on Wednesday, Facebook took about an hour before removing a video from Trump responding to the violence, where he made claims about the 2020 election results
“While I’m pleased to see social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube take long-belated steps to address the President’s sustained misuse of their platforms to sow discord and violence, these isolated actions are both too late and not nearly enough,” Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) said in a statement.
“Disinformation and extremism researchers have for years pointed to broader network-based exploitation of these platforms.”