Facebook placed a warning label on a Republican National Committee video released on its platform Friday, the same day CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the social network had launched a “crack down” on certain types of content by suppressing and prohibiting more content than in the past.
What are the details?
The GOP posted a video titled, “It’s about destroying America,” with a message saying “left-wing anarchists are using CHAOS to destroy America. President Trump stands up for LAW and ORDER. VOTE FOR TRUMP!”
Before users are able to view the clip, Facebook requires they click to see it, warning, “This video may show violent or graphic content. We covered this video so you can decide if you want to see it.”
Here is the RNC ad:
This isn’t about justice, it’s about destroying America.
All of the footage shown in the ad has been shown in the media, and includes statements from Black Lives Matter leaders, Democratic politicians, and footage from the riots that have been raging in the U.S. for weeks — including a video that shows a New York City police officer being hit by a vehicle during rioting. The video closes with the message, “This isn’t about justice, this is about destroying America.”
Facebook told a CNN reporter that the video of the officer being struck was the reason for the warning on the video, saying, “As with other videos that feature this graphic hit and run, we’ve included a warning screen so people are aware the content may be disturbing.”
But the timing of the warning label has some conservatives crying foul.
Also on Friday, Zuckerberg announced a slew of “new policies to connect people with authoritative information about voting, crack down on voter suppression, and fight hate speech.” He noted, “many of the changes we’re announcing today come directly from feedback from the civil rights community and reflect months of work with our civil rights auditors.”
Two of the initiatives explained by Zuckerberg were for “creating a higher standard for hateful content in ads,” and “labeling newsworthy content.”
The “labeling of newsworthy content” is a policy similar to what Twitter has implemented and used to suppress tweets by President Donald Trump via warning labels. Zuckerberg initially criticized Twitter for the practice, but has now adopted his own version for Facebook.
The policy changes rolled about by Facebook come as major companies have vowed to pull advertising dollars from the platform during the month of July, following months of pushing from liberal groups and politicians who have urged the social media network to suppress content from President Trump and conservative outlets.