When Trump violates Facebook’s new “guardrails” let’s make it hurt Zuckerberg financially until he’s banned again

When Trump returns to Facebook he will likely instantly violate their lax new “guardrails.” We know it will happen. Adam Schiff even pointed out what the violations will be in a letter to Meta in December 2022.
When it happens we should demand that Meta enforce their own rules. Will they?

If they do, they will lose engagement. In Zuckerberg’s mind more engagement, even engagement that violates their community standards, means more revenue. We know this from the Facebook Whistleblower Frances Haugen. We also know from the Jan 6th committee memo on Social Media (Link to gifted Washington Post article) that Zuckerberg overruled his staff who wanted to ban Trump for his multiple violations of their community standards before Jan 6th.

But engagement isn’t the only metric for Meta’s success. Meta’s stock price can be hurt in multiple ways. Stories about management making bad decisions hurt the stock. Stories about management supporting and enabling domestic terrorists can hurt the stock price. Big investors put pressure on management all the time when they see them making bad decisions (like they did on Zuckerberg for investing in the legless VR experience). Zuck thought it was going to be huge, he was wrong. Many investors think bringing Trump back to Facebook is a bad idea. It will be filled with controversy and advertisers don’t like controversy.

The investment community can punish Meta if it keeps Trump on OR if they kick Trump off. It all depends on how they see his return. A case can be made either way. Let’s help make it clear bringing Trump back on Facebook is a bad decision. And make this decision hurt Zuckerberg financially.

When the violations happen the mainstream media will ask Nick Clegg, President of Global Affairs who announced the guardrails, what Meta is going to do about the violation.

Nick Clegg, President Global Affairs at Meta (Does his admin answer the phone, “Global Affairs, would you like one?)

I’ve watched Clegg in interviews on TV. The media isn’t going to pin him down and this pisses me off. He’s a trained spokesperson, so I’d push him harder about the past & his promises for the future and ask “You decided to let a man with a history of inciting violence and threats of violence on your platform. You created special guidelines and said you would act when he does violates them. Now that he has violated the new guidelines, where is that action?
Why won’t you tell us what is happening and who is making the decisions?
Where is the transparency you promised?”

Nick Clegg, President Global Affairs at Meta (Does his admin answer the phone, “Global Affairs, would you like one?) BBC Photo

The media typically only think about all the ways Trump coming back on Facebook can help Meta be profitable. They don’t look at the big picture. Here’s the thing, Facebook doesn’t operate in a vacuum. The Trump of 2016 – Jan 6th 2020 is not the same as today’s Trump. He has a history of inciting violence. He is not going to stop being who he is. He will keep inciting violence and spreading lies about the election. To ignore that history and bring him back on Facebook is a bad decision by the CEO. And investors should to punish Zuckerberg for it.

Yes, there are a bunch of people who believe bringing Trump back on Meta is going to be profitable. But is that the only outcome? NO! Right now there are people talking to the instructional investors saying, “Trump’s return is going to have a negative impact on Meta.”

When I read the new guidelines and policies I saw that they are clearly designed to give Trump multiple ways to stay on the platform, no matter what he says. But some violations are clearly worse than others. THAT is what we should focus on.

Here are some of Meta’s community standards on violence and incitement. I’ve read them all. There are multiple ways that Trump has violated them and WILL violate them.

META Violence and Incitement Policies
Do Not Post:

  • Threats that could lead to death (and other forms of high-severity violence) and admission of past violence targeting people or places where threat is defined as any of the following:
  • Statements of intent to commit high-severity violence. This includes content where a symbol represents the target and/or includes a visual of an armament or method to represent violence.
  • Calls for high-severity violence including content where no target is specified but a symbol represents the target and/or includes a visual of an armament or method that represents violence.
  • Statements advocating for high-severity violence.
  • Aspirational or conditional statements to commit high-severity violence.
  • Statements admitting to committing high-severity violence except when shared in a context of redemption, self-defense or when committed by law enforcement, military or state security personnel.

Link to META Violence and Incitement Policies

The New Paper Mâché Guardrails For Trump

Meta’s previously bent the rules to keep TFG on the platform, ranging from their “newsworthiness allowance” to their creation of a Public Figures and Civil Unrest Policy for when there is a riot happening. They have a policy for restricting accounts of public figures during civil unrest and now they have a “Crisis Policy Protocol” which is a basically a black box of people who are supposed to “assesses the risks of imminent harm both on and off of our platform so we can respond with specific policy and product actions that will help keep people safe. ” The specifics on what the Crisis Policy Protocol contains are not made public and, as we have learned, the decisions made can be overruled by Mark Zuckerberg.

(BTW. they have this weird sanction/rule that what Trump puts up on his Facebook feed will be visible only to HIM, but nobody else will see it, even if they follow him. This is a blatant dodge designed just for Trump (as if his minions can’t figure out what is happening. “Hey we posted his Truth Social Murder Rant on Facebook and I can see it on his page, but when I look at my own personal account it doesn’t show up!” )

This policy will have NO impact on stopping the spread of his messages of violence, in practice they will be amplified. The policy was created just so Meta can say, “But we HAVE limited what he said! We removed the reshare button!!!” This is a lame sanction especially for someone who already starts with a massive audience for the original message.

What will happen is that the media will COVER what was made “invisible” to Trump’s followers thereby amplifying the message AND now making it “newsworthy” which allows Meta to keep it up because now it’s “News.” (It will likely be something that was already said on Truth Social that the Trump team didn’t bother to change for Facebook’s TOS.)

The followers will scream “They are censuring him!” They will cover it on Fox News, post if all over their platforms that have content moderation policies, but don’t enforce them. The followers don’t care that it was clear violation of Facebook’s defined policy, like incitement directed at a person. They just will scream CENSORSHIP! And what pisses me off is that there will be a bunch of woolly headed people who refuse to focus on the issue of Meta’s Community Standards and clear violations of them and talk about “The 1st Amendment.” and “Free speech.”

We have to stop giving TFG & his supporter the benefit of the doubt when they make threats! We now have multiple cases where threats were made, intent was the confirmed and action taken. And they are doing it again! Just last week, Trump promotes message from ‘locked and loaded’ supporter who vows to ‘physically fight’ for him

The minute Trump violates Facebook’s the media SHOULD dig into the evidence of how Trump and the right wing influencers used social media to incite violence and how they were protected by Zuckerberg–even when they clearly violated Meta’s own terms of service.

The right wing have been whining and complaining for years about how the “Woke Left” at Social Media companies are censoring them. It’s like how they worked the refs in the mainstream media. “The reporters are Democrats. They can’t be objective! They are covering us unfairly!” “The Social Media employees are Democrats. They are banning us for no reason! We need to be protected from being shadowbanned!”
Of course it’s all BS, but it worked on the media and it works on social media.

Here’s the deal, Meta EMPLOYEES created policies based on definitions of various types of comments people make, like threats of violence. They apply those policies in multiple areas. They are a private entity and can make decisions on what they allow to be posted. They have procedures to address what to do when there are violations. What we have learned from Frances Haugen (the Facebook Whistleblower) and the January 6th committee on Social Media, is that Zuckerberg consistantly overrules policies, decisions and the recommendations of his Trust and Safety employees.

The 122 page memo from the January 6th committee on Social Media covered the role they played before, during and after the insurrection. Big takeaways for me include:

  • Popular right-wing figures are protected from enforcement of Meta’s terms of service.
  • They can incite violence & intentionally spreading disinformation and get no “strikes”
  • Trump had perpetual “Zero Strikes”

Another big take away is that Zuckerberg worries most about negative press and criticism from the right vs. criticism from the left. Right wing groups come to him complaining that they were being removed for no reason (even when the reasons are very clear) they are given “a person” to call to complain to when they are reported by humans. And if they trigger Facebook’s AI, they are given the chance of human review (Which is a HUGE deal at a company where it’s almost impossible to talk to a human.)

Bottom line is that there have been no negative financial consequences to Zuckerberg for his bad decisions about Trump on Meta, so we need to make them happen to him.

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