Mark Zuckerberg has officially weighed in and —surprise! — after much deliberation has decided that doing nothing is the right and just thing.
On Friday afternoon, the Facebook CEO posted a lengthy note explaining his company’s labored response to Donald Trump’s threats against Minneapolis protesters responding to the police killing of George Floyd. Despite Trump’s post on Facebook, which clearly reads as threatening to have the protestors shot, Zuckerberg wrote that the proper thing to do was leave the post up.
Thankfully, Zuckerberg had the courage to do, well, nothing.
“I know many people are upset that we’ve left the President’s posts up, but our position is that we should enable as much expression as possible unless it will cause imminent risk of specific harms or dangers spelled out in clear policies,” wrote Zuckerberg.
In contrast, Twitter stuck a warning label over a tweet by the president with the same content. But even such a step, apparently, is too far for Zuckerberg who wrote, “that if a post incites violence, it should be removed regardless of whether it is newsworthy[.]” Zuck, it should be noted, knows a thing or two about his platform being used to incite violence.
In October, Zuckerberg sang a wildly different tune in his testimony to the House.
“If anyone, including a politician, is saying things that can cause, that is calling for violence or could risk imminent physical harm […] we will take that content down,” he told Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
In today’s post, Zuckerberg wrote that: “People can agree or disagree on where we should draw the line, but I hope they understand our overall philosophy is that it is better to have this discussion out in the open, especially when the stakes are so high.”
And indeed, the stakes are high — both for the protesters in Minneapolis and for those around the country seeking justice for George Floyd.
They’re also high for Zuckerberg, but in a much different way. Instead of risking life, limb, or liberty, Zuckerberg is risking pissing off Trump. Heaven forbid.