Twitter and Facebook imposed their toughest restrictions so far on President Donald Trump on Wednesday evening, after he incited his supporters to storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington in an attempt to overturn his election loss.
Both companies, the latter which also owns Instagram, temporarily suspended the President from posting on their platforms and removed several of his posts.
The account suspensions are the farthest either platform has gone in restricting Trump from broadcasting his message directly to his tens of millions of followers.
The moves come after years of calls for social media companies to do more to stop the President from spreading misinformation, conspiracy theories and threats that undermine democracy.
Twitter required Trump to delete three tweets that the company said violated their rules, and said it would suspend his account from posting for 12 hours after their removal. “If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked,” Twitter said in a statement. The tweets are no longer visible on his profile. The company also said that if Trump violated their rules again, his account would be permanently banned.
After Twitter acted, Facebook suspended Trump from posting for 24 hours from Wednesday evening, and deleted two posts it said violated its rules. Instagram, owned by Facebook, did the same.
Then, on Thursday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement, that Facebook would be extending the block on Trump indefinitely, and for at least two weeks until “the peaceful transition of power is complete.”
Snapchat blocked him on Wednesday morning, before he filmed the video. The platform said their locking of his account was indefinite.
Twitter, Facebook and YouTube also removed a video posted by Trump in which he called on rioters to go home, but insisted on his false claims that the election was stolen and told rioters he loved them. “This is an emergency situation and we are taking appropriate emergency measures, including removing President Trump’s video,” Facebook’s chief of safety and integrity, Guy Rosen, said in a statement. “We removed it because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.”