Technology

Facebook bans Qanon-related accounts on its platform

A supporter holds a QAnon sign as U.S. President Donald Trump addresses a campaign rally at Pennsylvania, U.S.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Facebook banned several groups, ads and pages related to Qanon, a conspiracy theory falsely alleging a secret plot against Donald Trump and his supporters by a group of people.

Facebook has scraped 1,500 ads, 790 groups and 100 pages connected to Qanon from its platform. It has also blocked more than 300 hashtags related to Qanon on both Facebook and Instagram.

The social networking company has imposed restrictions on over 1,950 Groups and 440 Pages on Facebook, and over 10,000 accounts on Instagram.

“We are taking action against Facebook Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts tied to offline anarchist groups that support violent acts amidst protests, US-based militia organizations and QAnon,” Facebook said.

Facebook said it plans to further remove Pages, Groups, Instagram accounts and organisations associated with these movements when they discuss potential violence. It will study the specific terms and symbols that secretly indicates violence, used by the groups and supporters.

It plans to closely follow these movements and groups as they try to evolve and skirt the rules. It will seek consultancies from outside experts to enforce policies against them.

Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts associated with these movements that are not removed will not be suggested to people when they wish to join Pages and follow accounts, Facebook said.

Content from these pages and groups will be ranked lower in the newsfeed so that people who already follow these Pages and are members of these Groups will be less likely to see them. Hashtags and titles of restricted Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts will also not be suggested through the Search function.

Any non-state actor or group that qualifies as a dangerous individual or organization will be banned from our platform, Facebook said.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jan 21, 2021 8:57:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/facebook-bans-qanon-related-accounts-on-its-platform/article32429828.ece

Next Story