Facebook and Twitter just escalated the ongoing tension with President Trump.
On Wednesday, Facebook acted first to remove a post from the president’s page that the company said contained false claims about the coronavirus.
The post was comprised of a video of an interview the president gave to Fox News on Wednesday morning.
“This video includes false claims that a group of people is immune from COVID-19 which is a violation of our policies around harmful COVID misinformation,” Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone said in a statement Wednesday evening.
He added that the specific comments that went against Facebook’s rules were Trump’s false claims about children being nearly immune to the virus.
The same clip was posted to Twitter by the Trump campaign, which was then shared from the president’s main account.
Good to know Twitter has former Kamala Harris staffers telling the Trump campaign what it can and can’t tweet. https://t.co/t6hMsh4NSF
— Matt Wolking (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@MattWolking) August 6, 2020
Although this is not the first time that Facebook has removed content from the president’s page, it is the first time a removal has been due to its COVID-19 misinformation rules.
Twitter also took action Wednesday evening.
“The Tweet you referenced is in violation of the Twitter Rules on COVID-19 misinformation. The account owner will be required to remove the tweet before they can tweet again,” the company said in a statement, after removing the tweet from the @teamtrump account on its platform.
When reporters asked the president about his online comments during a White House Coronavirus briefing Wednesday, he replied, “If you look at children, they are able to throw it off very easily and it’s an amazing thing, because some flus they don’t, they get very sick. … They seem to be able to handle it very well, and that’s according to every statistic.”
The Fox interview was viewed nearly 500,000 times during the four hours before it was removed from Facebook.