Facebook is Banning Protests That Violate Social Distancing Guidelines
The latest in continued collaboration between social media giants and the federal government during the pandemic.
Despite around a month of relative obedience from the public on behalf of social distancing, public protests have begun to appear over the last week throughout the United States. In an effort to help stem the spread of the disease, Facebook, where many of these events have been planned, has taken the initiative to ban any protests which defy social distancing guidelines put forth by the federal government.
Protests and the pages on which they are organized have been intense areas of misinformation, something social media sites have made an unprecedented effort to eradicate during the course of this pandemic.
Close ties have been associated with these scattered protests and the conservative party, with Donald Trump’s clear encouragement on behalf of the protesters despite them violating guidelines he vacillated on before putting in place.
A spokesperson from Facebook informed Vice’s Motherboard that the website would ban protests that violated social distancing guidelines, but would allow those which did not.
Social media websites have been repeatedly caught in a grey area of the law, allowing the spread of misinformation in key times, but the COVID-19 pandemic has shown a change for many organizations and how they disseminate their information. Social media platforms earn their fortunes on sustained viewership and, in the past, have shown a disregard for the American government’s opinion on what qualifies as an appropriate way to keep people locked on their site.
The unity behind preventing the spread of the most dangerous pandemic in the last 100 years has displayed an unprecedented compliance between social media sites and the federal government.