After Trump tweet debate, Facebook to review policies on posts

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Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg has pledged to review the social network’s policies, amid heated debate over how social media should handle posts by U.S. President Donald Trump.

The company will review how it handles threats of state use of force and posts that could influence voter participation, the social network’s chief executive said in a post on Facebook.

It will also look into alternatives to simply removing a post or leaving it as it stands.

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“I know many of you think we should have labeled the President’s posts in some way last week,” he wrote in a message to employees, but added that he worries such an approach risks leading Facebook to “editorialise on content we don’t like even if it doesn’t violate our policies.”

“So I think we need to proceed very carefully,” he wrote.

Zuckerberg has come under pressure from the public and his own employees after Twitter placed a “public interest notice” on a Trump post for violating the platform’s rules “about glorifying violence,” a move not mirrored by Facebook.

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In the tweet, which was also visible on his Facebook page, Trump slammed demonstrators protesting the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis as “THUGS” and appeared to promote a violent response by saying, “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

Zuckerberg said last week that the post did not violate Facebook’s guidelines, even if he personally disapproved.

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His public position is that internet platforms, including Facebook, should not be “arbiters of truth.”

Facebook largely exempts politicians’ posts from fact checks.

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