Facebook and Twitter placed warning labels on posts in which President Donald Trump claimed he had won the 2020 election and that Democrats were “trying to steal” victory.
Late Tuesday night, Facebook put a label beneath Trump’s post in which he declared “a big WIN!” and said he’d be making a statement. The label explained that votes were still being counted and that a winner had not yet been called in the presidential race. The label linked out to a page labeled “Voting Information Center.”
Facebook also labeled a post in which Trump said Democrats were trying to “STEAL the Election.”
“Final results may be different from initial vote counts, as ballot counting will continue for days or weeks,” the label read.
Of its decision to add the labels, Facebook tweeted: “Once President Trump began making premature claims of victory, we started running notifications on Facebook and Instagram that votes are still being counted and a winner is not projected. We’re also automatically applying labels to both candidates’ posts with this information.”
Trump made both of these statements on Twitter, too.
Twitter attached a warning to the president’s tweet claiming the election was being stolen, saying the post contained information that “is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.”
“We placed a warning on this Tweet for making a potentially misleading claim about an election,” a Twitter spokesperson said. “This action is in line with our Civic Integrity Policy, and as is standard with this warning, we will significantly restrict engagements on this Tweet.”
The civil integrity policy states that users “may not use Twitter’s services for the purpose of manipulating or interfering in elections or other civic processes.”
Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Trump fired off these missives after Fox News said Arizona had been called in favor of Democratic nominee Joe Biden.
After Fox News’ announcement, Trump campaign senior adviser Jason Miller wrote a series of tweets pushing back on the claims and demanding the network retract the call.
The network’s decision desk director, Arnon Mishkin, defended the call and explained that the outstanding votes to come from Maricopa County, where Biden is in a “very good position.”
“I’m sorry, the president is not going to be able to take over and win enough votes to eliminate that seven-point lead that the former vice president has,” Mishkin said on Fox News. “We’re four standard deviations from being wrong and I’m sorry, we’re not wrong in this case. We made the correct call and that’s why we made the correct call when we made it.”
This is the first time Facebook has labeled one of Trump’s posts, but Twitter has done so previously.
On Monday, the platform flagged a tweet that attempted to sow doubt about ballots counted after Election Day.
And in May, Twitter added a warning label to a Trump tweet lambasting people protesting the police killing of George Floyd. “Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts,” the president tweeted, threatening to send troops to stop “THUGS.”
Twitter “determined that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible,” but added a warning label that said the tweet violated rules against glorifying violence.
The platform has also fact-checked the president’s tweets, allowing users to click on an exclamation point beneath a tweet to get more information.
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