Facebook and twitter took action on posts from US president Donald Trump on Tuesday for violating their rules against coronavirus misinformation by suggesting that COVID-19 was just like the flu.
Facebook took the post down but not before it was shared about 26000 times, data from the company’s metric tool CrowdTangle showed. ‘we removed incorrect information about the severity of COVID-19, told by a company’s spokesperson.
The world’s largest social media company, which exempts politicians from its third-party fact- checking program, has rarely taken action against posts from the republican US president.
Twitter disabled retweets on a similar tweet from trump on Tuesday and added a warning label that said it broke its rules on ‘spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19’ but that it might be in the public interest for it to remain accessible.
Since the first case of the novel corona virus was recorded in the united states at the beginning of this year, more than 2,10,000 people in the country have died of the disease caused by the virus which is worlds highest death toll.
On Monday, trump told American’s ‘to get out there’ and not fear COVID-19 as he returned to the white house after a three-night stay in a military hospital outside Washington where he was treated for COVID-19.
Twitter, which has been using labels to flag tweets with misinformation, including from the president, told Reuters it is currently trying to respond more quickly and overtly.
Facebook removed a trump post for coronavirus misinformation for the first time in August. The post included a video in which the president falsely claimed that children were almost immune to COVID-19.