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Weighing the implications of Facebook’s ban on extremist leaders

Facebook banned a number of far-right figure from it's platform due to hate speech.
Facebook banned a number of far-right figure from it's platform due to hate speech.

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After years of pressure to crack down on extremist content, Facebook has banned Louis Farrakhan, Alex Jones and other extremists, saying they violated its ban against hate and violence.

The company also banned right-wing leaders Paul Nehlen, Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson and Laura Loomer, along with Jones’ site, Infowars. The latest bans apply to both Facebook’s main service and to Instagram. They also extend to fan pages and other related accounts.

Decried as censorship by several of those who got the ax, the move signals a renewed effort by the social media giant to remove objectionable material — and individuals — promoting hate, racism and anti-Semitism. Critics praised the move, but said there is more to be done on both Facebook and Instagram.

Larry sits down with a reporter, a first amendment expert and a media studies professor to discuss Facebook’s decision.

With files from the Associated Press


Mike Isaac, technology reporter for the New York Times; based in San Francisco​; he tweets @MikeIsaac

Alex Abdo, litigation director at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University; he tweets @AlexanderAbdo

Jeffrey McCall, professor of communication at DePauw University in Indiana and former journalist; he tweets @Prof_McCall