Earlier this morning U.S. President Donald Trump addressed those who stormed the Capitol building in Washington D.C. This video has now been removed by YouTube and Facebook and restricted by Twitter due to inclusion of false information regarding the 2020 presidential election.
On Thursday morning, Trump supporters mobbed the Capitol, halting a vote to certify the 2020 election results. This has resulted in the building being evacuated after the mob gained access to the voting floors and congressional chambers.
One woman was shot in the incident (CW: graphic) and several police officers have reportedly been injured.
Trump subsequently released a video to address the “protestors”, telling them to go home peacefully. However, he also took the opportunity to claim the 2020 presidential election was stolen from them. He also stated that he won the election by a ‘landslide’.
Twitter restricts Trump video
Trump posted the video to Twitter, but the social media platform has since restricted the tweet. While the video can still be viewed, it can’t be retweeted, liked or commented on.
A disclaimer has also been added to the bottom of the tweet.
“This claim of election fraud is disputed, and this Tweet can’t be replied to, Retweeted, or liked due to risk of violence.”
This video came after the mob had already stormed the Capitol building with weapons.
While similar labels were attached to some of Trump’s tweets during the election, this seems to be the first time that a risk of violence has been flagged by the company.
Trump has since followed up with another tweet.
“These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long. Go home with love & in peace. Remember this day forever!”
This tweet has also been restricted due to the inclusion of disinformation.
Twitter has since removed the video and several other tweets by Trump, citing the continued violence in Washington D.C. It has also locked the account for 12 hours and threatened to make the ban permeant. You can read more here.
YouTube and Facebook ban the video
YouTube has taken these restrictions a step further by banning Trump’s video. According to The Verge this was also due to misinformation surrounding the election.
This comes off the back of YouTube instituting a new policy that prohibits content alleging 2020 presidential election fraud back in December.
“As the situation at the United States Capitol Building unfolds, our teams are working to quickly remove livestreams and other content that violates our policies…We will remain vigilant in the coming hours,” YouTube told The Verge.
However, the video will be allowed to stay live within other videos if presented in an educational or news context.
Facebook has also since followed suit.
“This is an emergency situation and we are taking appropriate emergency measures, including removing President Trump’s video,” Facebook’s vice president of integrity, Guy Rosen, said on Twitter.
“We removed it because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.”
Social media platforms are also scrambling to deal with pro-Trump livestreams from today that violate their content policies. While searching for content relating to the Capitol storming generally surfaces news platforms on YouTube, it has been possible to find pro-coup streams under certain search terms in Google Chrome’s incognito mode.
According to The Verge, some of these streams were monetised, pointed to crowd funding pages or included ads.
Facebook has banned Donald Trump’s account for 24 hours. You can read more here.