Users of the social network Facebook have once again started reporting on the censorship of Bitcoin-related content. Through Twitter, users have reported that Facebook is removing Bitcoin content and displaying a warning message about how multiple users are reporting such as “The Moon”. According to the report, the social network is trying to “protect” its users from possible harm.
In response to the complaints, the crypto community stated that similar censorship is also occurring on Instagram. However, the ban could be specific to certain areas and countries. In European and Asian countries, users are not experiencing a censorship. Furthermore, content that uses tags related to Cardano, Ethereum, XRP is seeing no problems on the social network.
ensorship of Bitcoin-related content has been an important issue for the crypto community in recent years. In addition to Facebook, YouTube has also been accused of censoring pro-crypto channels. A Ripple lawsuit even alleges that the platform benefits from promoting scams that use the image of crypto-space personalities to harm the industry.
In a recent congressional hearing, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, and Google CEO Sundar Pichai were confronted about their content control policies. There, congressmen from both parties accused the platforms of exercising censorship at their convenience protected by Section 230, a law that protects media companies from facing liabilities from the content they publish. Roger Wicker, senator for the state of Mississippi had this to say about the referred companies and Section 230:
This liability shield has been pivotal in protecting online platforms from endless and potentially ruinous lawsuits. It has also given these internet platforms the ability to control, stifle and even censor content in whatever manner meets their respective standards.
Since 2018, Facebook has had a policy that disfavors Bitcoin content. The former Director of Product Management, Rob Leathern, published an post at the time in which he outlined new measures regarding advertising, promotion and content related to ICOs and cryptocurrencies that “do not work in good faith”.
We’ve created a new policy that prohibits ads that promote financial products and services that are frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices, such as binary options, initial coin offerings and cryptocurrency.
Meanwhile, the crypto community is speculating that the censorship is related to Facebook’s digital currency, Libra. As a direct competitor, Bitcoin content could be censored to reduce the exposure to more than 1 billion users of the social network. However, Libra is a project that seems destined to remain in a test phase after losing key partners and being stopped by several international entities, such as the European Union.
On the other hand, section 230 could be changed in the medium term. Therefore, social network companies could take new measures to protect themselves from possible lawsuits and legal obligations. Whether users can benefit from a change in this law remains to be seen.