Facebook made an announcement on Monday that it is blacklisting any content that contains the phrase "stop the steal" ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's January 20 Inauguration Day.
Facebook to Remove Content Containing 'Stop the Steal'
The social media giant issued a statement indicating it was removing content containing the phrase that was used by President Donald Trump's supporters to question the integrity of the 2020 presidential election.
The move comes 69 days after Election Day. Facebook stated in a blog post that it would ramp up enforcement against the phrase due to the fact it was used by protesters who participated in Wednesday's siege at the US Capitol.
According to Guy Rosen, Facebook's VP of integrity, "With continued attempts to organize events against the outcome of the US presidential election that can lead to violence, and use of the term by those involved in Wednesday's violence in DC, we're taking this additional step in the lead up to the inauguration," reported Fox 5.
Last week's mayhem in Washington, DC, resulted in five fatalities.
The social network declared that it would start taking down Facebook and Instagram posts that contain the slogan, reported Yahoo.
Also, according to Facebook, it began preparing for Inauguration Day in 2020, but its planning took on new urgency following the violence at Capitol Hills. Therefore, they are treating the succeeding two weeks as a major civic event, reported Rosen's post in the About Facebook blog.
The social network believes the phrase could provoke further violence.
In November 2020, the website removed a large Stop the Steal group comprising about 300,000 members.
Pro-Trump protesters also organized a November rally after the election called "Stop the Steal" that drew thousands of Trump supporters to Washington, DC.
"We are now removing content containing the phrase 'stop the steal' under our Coordinating Harm policy from Facebook and Instagram," stated Facebook.
After taking down the original Stop the Steal group in November, they have continued to remove groups, pages, and events that contravene their policies, including calls for violence.
According to Facebook officials Rosen and Monika Bickert, they have been allowing robust conversations associated with the election outcome, and they will continue on.
With ongoing efforts to organize events against the results of the United States presidential election that could possibly lead to violence, and use of the term by people involved in the siege in Washington, DC, they are taking this additional step preceding the inauguration.
The company remarked it had removed a "significant number" of posts but that it could take a while to scale up their enforcement of the newly-implemented policy.
The "stop the steal" moniker has been used by Trump supporters to spread conspiracy theories regarding the election and call for an armed response.
The moniker's origins date back years, and Facebook's CrowdTangle analysis tool indicates it became wildly popular in recent months as a gathering place for such theories regarding the election outcome.
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