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Facebook’s Oversight Board will rule on Trump ban on May 5

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Facebook’s Oversight Board will be announcing its decision on the ban on former US President Donald Trump on May 5, the Board announced today. The Board had accepted the case on January 21 and has taken more than its typical 90 days to rule on the issue. It has also received over 9000 public comments on the issue over the past three months. Many expect the Board to rule in favour of Trump and overturn the ban, and whatever decision it takes will be binding on the social media giant.

The former US President’s Facebook and Instagram accounts were banned on January 7, accusing him of breaking the platform’s rules around posts inciting violence. The ban was imposed following Trump’s comments on the platform regarding violence at the US Capitol building, which many have said he was directly responsible for. He had also been banned by Twitter, YouTube and Twitch.

“Facebook’s decision to suspend Mr. Trump’s access to post on Facebook and Instagram on January 7, 2020 has driven intense global interest. The Oversight Board has been closely following events in the United States (US) and Facebook’s response to them, and the Board is ready to provide a thorough and independent assessment of the company’s decision,” the Board said in a blog post at the time.

The Oversight Board, which was dubbed the Supreme Court of Facebook by CEO Mark Zuclerberg himself, has the last word on all takedown decisions referred to it. Its decision on the Trump ban is expected to have overarching implications on how the social media giant deals with posts from politicians and celebrities on the platform in future. It is also the first high profile case that has been referred to the Board.

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