Twitter, Facebook Limit Spread of Trump Election Post

November 4, 2020 Updated: November 4, 2020

Technology giants Facebook and Twitter on Nov. 4 took action on a post from President Donald Trump, the latest move against the Republican.

“We are up BIG, but they are trying to STEAL the Election. We will never let them do it. Votes cannot be cast after the Polls are closed!” Trump wrote in the post.

According to projected results, Trump was trailing challenger Joe Biden by a small margin, with battleground states such as Wisconsin and Michigan still tallying votes.

Twitter hid the tweet from users, forcing them to click through a warning that stated, “Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.”

Users were encouraged to refer to Twitter’s policy on civic integrity.

The policy states that “the public conversation occurring on Twitter is never more important than during elections and other civic events. Any attempts to undermine the integrity of our service is antithetical to our fundamental rights and undermines the core tenets of freedom of expression, the value upon which our company is based.”

It says Twitter will label tweets in instances “where misleading information does not seek to directly manipulate or disrupt civic processes, but leads to confusion on our service.”

Twitter recently announced that it would limit sharing on certain election-related posts.

Facebook didn’t shield Trump’s post, but informed users, “Final results may be different from initial vote counts, as ballot counting will continue for days or weeks.”

Epoch Times Photo
A combined image showing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (L) and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testifying remotely before Congress on Oct. 28, 2020. (Michael Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

Most states have reported unofficial results as of the morning of Nov. 4, and the others are expected to report winners no later than Nov. 6.

Facebook users were directed to the company’s voter information center.

Facebook also added a note to a Trump post that said, “I will be making a statement tonight. A big WIN!

The tech company stated: “Votes are still being counted. The winner of the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election has not been projected.”

The same post on Twitter was left alone, with no label.

In a statement about the action, Facebook said: “Once President Trump began making premature claims of victory, we started running notifications on Facebook and Instagram that votes are still being counted and a winner is not projected. We’re also automatically applying labels to both candidates’ posts with this information.”

While tech companies have increasingly targeted Trump for alleged misleading posts, they haven’t taken similar action against Biden.

Requests for comment on the discrepancy weren’t immediately returned.

The Trump campaign didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Trump in a press conference on the morning of Nov. 4 claimed he’d won the election, an assertion disputed by Biden’s campaign.

The suppression of conservative social media users such as Trump has prompted members of Congress and the Trump administration to push for alterations to Section 230 of the Communications and Decency Act, which protects social media platforms from most lawsuits.

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber