Twitch, Twitter and Facebook Take Action Against The Trump Campaign’s Hateful Content

Published on June 30, 2020

The popular video streaming service, Twitch, has temporarily removed an account run by the Trump campaign following posts that demonstrated hateful content. A Twitch spokesperson, Brielle Villablanca told CNN, “In line without policies, President Trump’s channel has been issued a temporary suspension from Twitch for comments made on stream, and the offending content has been removed.”

A video of Trump’s 2016 campaign rally was of the content that called for the account’s suspension. In that video, Trump is heard calling Mexicans “rapists and criminals.” In another video, Trump tells a hypothetical story of a Mexican man breaking into a young woman’s house at his recent rally in Tulsa; he refers to the man as a “very tough hombre.” Twitch claims that this kind of language was in violation of its policies and is precisely the kind of hateful content they’re trying to discourage from spreading within their platform. 

Twitch’s decision to temporarily terminate the Trump campaign’s account arrives shortly after Twitter and Facebook find the president in direct violation of similar policies within their platforms. 

Facebook removed one of Trump’s ads for its inclusion of a Nazi symbol, which violates Facebook’s policy against organized hate

On June 19, the Anti-Defamation League called out one of Trump’s ads for displaying an upside-down triangle which the group states is “practically identical to that used by the Nazi regime to classify political prisoners in concentration camps.” This ad, which targeted hate against Antifa, was featured across Facebook feeds in an effort to urge Trump supporters to call for their representatives to formally label the anti-facist political movement as an organized terrorist group. 

The Trump campaign insisted that this symbol was used by Antifa, but neglected to identify any examples of Antifa wearing or using the symbol. 

Twitter finds Trump in violation of its policies for the fourth time in just a few weeks

On June 23, Trump tweeted, “There will never be an “Autonomous Zone” in Washington, D.C., as long as I’m your President. If they try they will be met with serious force!” 

The Twitter Safety account responded to Trump’s tweet, stating, “Per our policies, this Tweet will remain on the service given its relevance to ongoing public conversation. Engagements with the Tweet will be limited. People will be able to Retweet with Comment, but not Like, Reply, or Retweet it.” 

Later that day, the account announced that the company has “placed a public interest notice on this Tweet for violating our policy against abusive behavior, specifically, the presence of a threat of harm against an identifiable group.” 

Last year Twitter had announced that it would be putting specific rules in place for politicians–stating that moving forward, it would attach a disclaimer on tweets from world leaders that violate its policies, but tweets it finds are still of “public interest” would remain visible to the public.

Though these decisions were met with anger and defiance by both Trump and his supporters, Twitter’s consistent flagging should come as no shock. Trump has received warnings from Twitter in the last few weeks after he posted false claims about mail-in ballots, glorified violence against protestors, and manipulated content for political gain–this tweet has since been removed due to a copyright claim.

Kristen Sallaberry is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily. Based in New York, she covers the realm of consumer tech and how these ever-progressing gadgets affect our lives. A creative writer and music-head, she also writes for online music publication, Sound of Boston, where she reviews and premieres new music, and co-writes a hip-hop focused column.

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