Meta restores Trump’s Facebook, Instagram accounts

The Facebook and Instagram pages belonging to former President Donald Trump have been restored Thursday. Meta, who also owns and operates Facebook and Instagram, announced last month via a blog post last month that it would be ending Trump’s suspension on both social media platforms “in the coming weeks.” Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Meta, said at the time that the company determined Trump is no longer a “serious risk to public safety” and they had “guardrails” in place for his return. TRUMP ISSUES STATEMENT AFTER META ANNOUNCES END OF 2-YEAR FACEBOOK BAN, ALLOWING HIM TO RETURN TO THE PLATFORM “To assess whether the serious risk to public safety that existed in January 2021 has sufficiently receded, we have evaluated the current environment according to our Crisis Policy Protocol, which included looking at the conduct of the US 2022 midterm elections, and expert assessments on the current security environment,” Clegg wrote. “Our determination is that the risk has sufficiently receded, and that we should therefore adhere to the two-year timeline we set out. As such, we will be reinstating Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks. However, we are doing so with new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses.” The suspension was initially instated following the Capitol protests on Jan. 6, 2021, when the platform said it would be booting Trump “indefinitely” for his alleged involvement.  The decision to remove Trump from the platforms drew backlash across the political spectrum and was the first time a sitting president was barred from Facebook. At the time, Trump was also banned from Twitter, YouTube and Snapchat. Twitter has restored Trump’s account, but the former president has not posted from the platform since his suspension. Following Meta’s announcement last month, Trump took to social media to chide Facebook and parent company Meta for banning him in the first place. “FACEBOOK, which has lost Billions of Dollars in value since ‘deplatforming’ your favorite President, me, has just announced that they are reinstating my account,” he wrote shortly after 4 p.m. “Such a thing should never again happen to a sitting President, or anybody else who is not deserving of retribution!” TRUMP SAYS FACEBOOK ‘NEEDS US MORE THAN WE NEED THEM,’ AS CAMPAIGN CALLS FOR REINSTATEMENT In the post, Trump also thanked Truth Social, his own platform, for “doing an incredible job” for having him and for their recent success. Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung previously told Fox News Digital that Trump heavily relied on Facebook ad sales during his successful 2016 campaign when he defeated Hillary Clinton. Trump – who announced last November that he would be seeking the White House in 2024 for a third time – spent $44 million between June and November 2016, Cheung said, citing nearly 6 million different versions of ads that Trump ran. Earlier this year, the Trump campaign’s general counsel formally requested a meeting with Meta executives to discuss the potential for his “prompt reinstatement to the platform.” Fox News obtained the letter, first reported by NBC, that Trump campaign general counsel Scott Gast sent to Zuckerberg, Meta President for Global Affairs Nick Clegg and Meta Vice President of Global Public Policy Joel Kaplan. Gast said Meta’s decision to ban Trump after the Capitol riot “immediately drew widespread criticism from across the political spectrum at home and abroad.” CLICK TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP “Facebook’s own Oversight Board raised concern about how the ban was implemented, advising the company to develop ‘clear, necessary, and proportionate policies that promote public safety and respect freedom of expression,'” he wrote. Gast was referring to Facebook’s Oversight Board decision in May 2021, which decided to uphold Trump’s ban, but said it was “not appropriate” for Facebook to impose the “indeterminate and standardless penalty of indefinite suspension.” Fox News’ Lawrence Richard and Brooke Singman contributed to this article.
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