Facebook new policy targets separatist groups, conspiracy theorists

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Your post may no longer be tolerated if it smells of hate and “social harm.” Facebook has announced a new policy against ‘coordinated social harm’ that may lower the bar on who gets banned, the Washington Post reports.

The new enforcement policy targets groups that coordinate online to spread misinformation, hate and “social harm” but do not violate traditional company standards against “inauthentic” content.

The new policy no longer requires a person or group to engage in what Facebook calls ‘inauthentic’ activity to face sanctions for coordinated violations

Facebook immediately used its new policy against “coordinated social harm” on Thursday to shut down large portions of a German online network pushing the Querdenken conspiracy theory, which has fueled resistance to government health restrictions related to the covid-19 pandemic.

Facebook new policy targets separatist groups, others

The new guidelines by Facebook against “spread of misinformation, hate and social harm” may also affect separatist groups notably in Nigeria and India where the social media platform has had to contend with increasing government angsts.

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Twitter is currently banned in Nigeria after authorities in Abuja said it was promoting tweets by groups threatening the country’s “corporate existence.”

In India, Twitter and WhatsApp have been accused by the government of encouraging inciting messages capable of ‘promoting violence.’

According to the Washington Post, this week’s action moves Facebook beyond its long-standing reliance on “inauthenticity” as the key marker of forbidden behavior on the platform.


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