Facebook founder Zuckerberg says they will begin to up the ante in censoring pages or posts related to government protests over the stay-home-order, in an attempt to halt what he calls harmful misinformation. He said that Facebook will only remove the pages for states where citizens act directly and outrightly against government mandates.
Facebook’s stance is widely supported by those on the Left who at large believe it is in the nation’s best interest to keep the stay-at-home order in place for the time being, and believe in Facebook’s responsibility to ban false information that poses a public health threat. A Pew Research Center poll stated Democrats’ main “concern is that governments will lift these restrictions too quickly.”
Democratic governors from Nebraska, New Jersey, and California were in strong support of Facebook’s actions.
“Facebook has taken a refreshingly interventionist approach to stopping the spread of COVID-19 misinformation…”The Verge
Limitations to free speech generally doesn’t settle well with those on the right, and this instance is no different: many view Facebook’s acts as an attempt to hinder their First Amendment rights, not just from a private organization that has the right to determine its own policies, but from a government who is working directly with Facebook to remove political content and opinion. Reporter David Harsanyi from the National Review wrote:
“Government has some leeway in protecting public health, but it has no right, not even during an emergency, to work to preemptively prevent Americans from expressing their political beliefs. If Facebook removed advertisements for protests at the behest of state and local governments — as initial reports suggested it might have — it would be an clear assault on expression”National Review
Many on the right are leery of actual misinformation being provided by the WHO (World Health Organization) and parrotted by government officials, which seems to have happened in January regarding the Corna-Virus.