Donald Trump Signing Executive Order Banning Facebook Is A Hoax
By Erica Abbott
Reports that President Donald Trump signed an executive order banning Facebook are false. Like other fake executive orders Trump has signed, there is no truth to the claim that Facebook will be banned in the United States—it is nothing more than political satire.
According to PolitiFact, the fake claim originated on Firstpost on April Fools’ Day. The article claimed Trump’s latest executive order would ban Facebook in the U.S., a decision that even some Republican leaders did not support. It continued:
Unfazed by the criticism from his own party members, Trump said that this move would fight fake news being circulated on social media websites. “Inside, we both know what’s been going on. We know the game and we’re gonna play it,” said Trump.
Governance involves taking difficult steps, said the US president, adding that despite Facebook taking action against fake news, a lot of false stories and ‘alternative facts’ were still being circulated on the site.
Other social websites like Twitter and Instagram, though, will be excluded from the executive order.
There is, of course, no truth to any of these claims. The original article was published as an April Fools’ Day hoax and pranked readers with Rick Astley song lyrics as quotes and a link to the “Never Gonna Give You Up” music video. The article, however, was then republished by USA News for You without the prank links and tags, which may have lead to confusion among readers.
While Trump has not banned Facebook, he did spark outrage soon after his inauguration when he issued a media blackout for the Environmental Protection Agency and the United States Department of Agriculture. In an attempt to defy the administration’s gag order, unverified, “alternative” government accounts began to appear on Twitter and soon gained thousands of followers.
EPA Policy: “conduct, utilize, and communicate science with honesty, integrity, and transparency, both within and outside the Agency”
— altEPA (@altUSEPA) January 25, 2017
A plan was unveiled last year to fight Facebook’s fake news problem. Steps included making it easier to report fake news and hoax articles, flagging disputed stories and teaming up with fact-checking websites such as Snopes. Former President Barack Obama had previously spoken to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about the social media network’s issue with spreading fake news. Fake news was especially problematic last year when it was used by governments and organizations to sway political opinion and the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.
The “Facebook ban” executive order is not the first fake executive order Trump has purportedly signed. Others have included Trump signing orders declaring himself the winner of the popular vote, declaring that climate change is a threat and temporarily banning vaccinations for children. None of them are real executive orders.
Social Media Shares Trump’s Executive Order Facebook Ban Hoax
Donald Trump to issue an executive order to ban Facebook across US https://t.co/PkqDYqoNa5
— Paul McCarty (@nmilluminati) April 2, 2017
Donald Trump to issue an executive Go to the full article.