March 5, 2024

“Facebook was clearly abused by influential users,” said Helle Thorning-Schmidt, co-chair of the Oversight Board.

Facebook doesn’t have to accept these recommendations, but has said it will “examine them carefully”.

For Mr. Trump, Facebook has long been a place to gather his digital base and support other Republicans. He was followed by more than 32 million people on Facebook, although this was far fewer than the 88 million+ followers he had on Twitter.

Over the years, Mr. Trump and Mr. Zuckerberg had an irritable relationship. Mr Trump regularly attacked Silicon Valley executives for suppressing conservative language. He also threatened to revoke Section 230, a legal shield protecting companies like Facebook from liability for what users post.

Mr Zuckerberg on occasion criticized some of Mr Trump’s policies, including how to deal with the pandemic and immigration. But as calls from lawmakers, civil rights activists, and even Facebook’s own staff increased to contain Mr Trump on social media, Mr Zuckerberg declined to act. He said the speeches given by political leaders, even if they are telling lies, were timely and in the public interest.

The two men appeared cordial at occasional meetings in Washington. Mr Zuckerberg visited the White House more than once and dined privately with Mr Trump.

The courtesy ended on January 6th. Hours before his supporters stormed the Capitol, Mr Trump used Facebook and other social media to cast doubts on the results of the presidential election he lost to Joseph R. Biden Jr. Trump wrote on Facebook, “Our country has had enough, them will not take it anymore! “

Less than 24 hours later, Mr Trump was banned from the platform indefinitely. While his Facebook page stayed active, she slept. His last Facebook post on January 6th read: “I ask everyone in the US Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! “

Cecilia Kang contributed to coverage from Washington.