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Trump Seethes As Facebook Refuses To Return His Keys

Former US President Donald Trump will not be back on Facebook any time soon, with the social media giant’s Oversight Board upholding the suspension of his accounts.

The Oversight Board ruled that the initial suspension of Trump’s accounts following his actions around the January 6 US Capitol insurgency was justified, though it noted that the “indeterminate and standardless” indefinite suspension was against Facebook’s policies, and ordered Facebook to make a final decision in accordance with those policies within six months.

“Facebook’s normal penalties include removing the violating content, imposing a time-bound period of suspension, or permanently disabling the page and account.

“The Board insists that Facebook review this matter to determine and justify a proportionate response that is consistent with the rules that are applied to other users of its platform,” the Board wrote in a statement.

Nick Clegg, Facebook.

Nick Clegg, Facebook’s VP of Global Affairs, welcomed the Board’s decision and promised to decide upon a “clear and proportionate” action.

“As we stated in January, we believe our decision was necessary and right, and we’re pleased the board has recognized that the unprecedented circumstances justified the exceptional measure we took,” he said.

Facebook indefinitely suspended the former President’s Facebook and Instagram accounts following January 6’s far-right attack on the US Capitol building by his supporters, during which he posted content that Facebook determined was against its rules banning praise or support of people engaged in violence.

At the time, Trump had 35 million Facebook followers and 24 million Instagram followers, the Board notes.

“The Board found that, in maintaining an unfounded narrative of electoral fraud and persistent calls to action, Mr. Trump created an environment where a serious risk of violence was possible. At the time of Mr. Trump’s posts, there was a clear, immediate risk of harm and his words of support for those involved in the riots legitimised their violent actions,” it said.

Trump has slammed the Board’s decision as “a total disgrace and an embarrassment to our Country”, lashing out at “Radical Left Lunatics” for allegedly taking away his free speech.

“The People of our Country will not stand for it! These corrupt social media companies must pay a political price, and must never again be allowed to destroy and decimate our Electoral Process,” he said on his new online platform. The site, From The Desk of Donald J. Trump, appears to be little more than a WordPress-style blog that allows sharing of his posts to Facebook and Twitter, from which he is also banned.

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