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NYT: Facebook Will No Longer Give Politicians' Hate Speech A Free Pass

Politicians will be subject to Facebook’s content guidelines that prohibit harassment, discrimination or other harmful speech, sources said.
NYT: Facebook Will No Longer Give Politicians' Hate Speech A Free Pass
Image from: YouTube.com

Facebook will announce today that it will no longer automatically keep posts by politicians up on its site if their speech breaks its rules -- which is a big change from the "well, it's newsworthy" approach that gave the disgraced former president Donald Trump such a wide reach. Via the New York Times:

Under the change, politicians’ posts will no longer be presumed newsworthy, said the people with knowledge of the plans, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Politicians will be subject to Facebook’s content guidelines that prohibit harassment, discrimination or other harmful speech, they said.

If Facebook does decide speech from politicians is newsworthy, it can be exempt from being pulled down, under a standard the company has used since at least 2016. Starting on Friday, the people with knowledge of the plans said, Facebook will disclose when it has applied the newsworthiness clause to rule-breaking posts.

If they actually enforce this -- if they're actually transparent and consistent about exceptions, it should be a huge improvement for our democracy. Because Facebook has been an easy point of entry for hate speech.

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