Multiple Facebook users took to social media accusing the site of preventing them from sharing links to the anti-establishment financial blog Zero Hedge. Attempts to visit content from the site are met with messages that the link goes against community standards.
— Ollie Richardson (@O_Rich_) March 11, 2019
According to Zero Hedge “We were especially surprised by this action as neither prior to this seemingly arbitrary act of censorship, nor since, were we contacted by Facebook with an explanation of what “community standard” had been violated or what particular filter or article had triggered the blanket rejection of all Zero Hedge content.”
The site acknowledged that this could be the result of having some of their articles flagged by readers or that it could potentially be retaliatory to Zero Hedge’s continual coverage of Facebook’s many questionable policies including privacy violations, “gross and ongoing misrepresentation of fake users”, and “systematic censorship.”
Donald Trump Jr. noted his disdain for this news on Twitter, calling it “disgusting” and also claiming it was due to Facebook not agreeing with Zero Hedge.
The censorship continues. How does @zerohedge’s content not “meet community standards?” FB doesn’t agree with them and they hit the platform’s obvious flaws at times. That’s it and it’s disgusting!
Facebook Bans Zero Hedge | Zero Hedge https://t.co/n6YsFhvFI5
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) March 12, 2019
Cornell Professor Dave Collum called Facebook “a bunch of Orwellian-Nazi types” for the censorship and encouraged everyone to leave Facebook briskly.
Facebook has blocked @zerohedge. I went and checked. It is true. Facebook is a bunch of Orwellian-Nazi types. I would get off that platform ASAP. Zuckerberg: You can rot in hell. They are saving a place for you.https://t.co/eIDzZEpuMR
— Dave Collum (@DavidBCollum) March 12, 2019
Bloomberg notes that this could also be due to Facebook’s announcement to fight the tide of fake news and harmful content that is permeating the site. CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced in 2016 that the site would be enacting a new plan to flag fake news stories and prevent users from being deceived.
While parts of this plan made sense, such as improving their detection of fake news, and making it easier for users to report it, one of the points sought to “[ensure] ‘quality’ news appears in the News Feed” with no explanation as to which news would meet this qualification. Facebook has a habit of wrongfully filtering legitimate content, the most recent being the removal of Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s political ads that claimed the tech giants, which includes the social media site, need to be broken up and have their monopoly powers taken away.
This news comes on the heels of Project Veritas’ report interviewing a Facebook insider who claimed the site has been purposefully limiting the reach of conservative pages. The social media giant has not responded yet to request from Zero Hedge, Bloomberg or Business Insider.
Note: The filter may have been lifted as of publication of this article. The author attempted to share a Zero Hedge article to Facebook as a post and as a message and both attempts were posted and clicking the link was not blocked.