POLITICS

Facebook Bans Donald Trump 'Indefinitely'

"We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said.

Facebook is “indefinitely” banning President Donald Trump from its platform, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Thursday.

“The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden,” he said in a statement, referring to Trump’s refusal to condemn his supporters for forming a violent mob and storming the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. 

“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great,” Zuckerberg added. “Therefore, we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete.” 

Instagram head Adam Mosseri said “exceptional circumstances” had prompted the decision to ban the president. 

This means Trump won’t be allowed to use the platforms again as president, as President-elect Joe Biden will be inaugurated on Jan. 20.

Facebook’s announcement came just one day after Democrats regained control of the Senate — and with it, significant regulatory power. Critics of the social media companies have long argued oversight is overdue.

Facebook and Twitter both locked Trump’s accounts for 12 hours on Wednesday after the president failed to quell violence at the Capitol, and decided instead to use social media to tell mob members he loved them and that they were “very special.” 

A Twitter spokesperson told HuffPost the company will “continue to evaluate the situation in real time” and didn’t rule out the possibility of further escalation.

E-commerce platform Shopify also said Thursday that it would take Trump’s pages offline. The Trump campaign and Trump Organization both use Shopify to sell merchandise. 

Trump’s actions violated Shopify’s Acceptable Use Policy, “which prohibits promotion or support of organizations, platforms or people that threaten or condone violence to further a cause,” the company told HuffPost.

Twitch, a livestreaming platform popular with gamers, suspended Trump’s channel Thursday afternoon, the company told reporter Casey Newton.

“Given the current extraordinary circumstances and the President’s incendiary rhetoric, we believe this is a necessary step to protect our community and prevent Twitch from being used to incite further violence,” Twitch said in a statement.