Week in Review - Facebook's worst nightmare

TechCrunch Newsletter
TechCrunch logo
Week in Review logo

Saturday, January 09, 2021 By Lucas Matney

Hey everyone, welcome back to Week in Review. Lord, this was a long first week of the year, here’s to a boring rest of the month, I hope.

The Big Story

I wrote about Section 230 last week in this newsletter all in pretty vague terms without any real takeaways beyond, “230 reform will still be a thing post-Trump.” Well, I think there are fewer doubts about that argument after this week when chaotic riots hit the Capitol building in D.C.

The big news of the week was a unified dumping of troublesome social media accounts from right-wing figures across the board by tech companies which have dealt with moderation nightmares for years.

The most noteworthy of which was, of course, Twitter’s permanent ban of President Trump’s account. But Google removed Parler from the Play Store, Apple threatened to do the same from their App Store, YouTube banned Steve Bannon’s channel, Reddit banned a Trump-centric subreddit and Discord banned a Trump-centric server. This all happened yesterday.

What I’m left wondering is where Facebook stands in the midst of all of this. Yes, the company already issued a two-week ban on Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts but what happens when those two weeks are up? All of a sudden, Facebook’s platforms could be the only place that Donald Trump, the citizen, can make his voice heard.

Twitter dumping all of its ailments onto Zuckerberg and company may be Facebook’s greatest nightmare come true.

It’s important to note that the Facebook and Instagram ban is technically “indefinite,” merely at least two weeks, but I’d imagine that the company is going to be forced into making a definitive statement sooner rather than later as to the fate of Trump’s Facebook and Instagram presence, otherwise a reinstatement is on the way.

It’s no secret that each of these platforms is emboldened by the decisions of the other, I doubt that Twitter would have dropped a permanent ban if Facebook hadn’t dropped a two-week ban, which Facebook likely wouldn’t have done had Twitter not levied a 24-hour ban. Timing is one thing and momentum is another, Facebook could end up worse off than ever after this entire saga while Twitter finds a much more peaceful existence.

*There’s also the possibility that in between me hitting send on this newsletter and you reading it that Facebook has taken further action against the now-President’s accounts, in which case please feel free to disregard the contents of this email.

The Big Story image

Image Credits: MANDEL NGAN / JOSH EDELSON/AFP / Getty Images (Image has been modified)

Trends of the Week

Why Twitter banned President Trump
My colleague Taylor spent this week in the trenches of the Capitol riots story and the resulting de-platforming of President Trump. here’s her take on why Twitter pulled the plug. More here.

Roku acquires Quibi’s content
The weirdest startup failure of the year ends with a low-profile acquisition for the company’s content. Goodbye Quibi. Read more here.

What is up with Tesla’s value?
If I were a betting man, I’d argue that when Tesla’s stock finally comes crashing down to earth it will bring a lot of other high profile tech stocks with it. The company’s value on public markets has reached ridiculous heights and my colleague Alex Wilhelm tries to decipher why exactly that is. Read more here.

Trends of the Week image

Image Credits: TechCrunch

Read more stories on TechCrunch.com

Newest Jobs from Crunchboard

See more jobs on CrunchBoard

Post your tech jobs and reach millions of TechCrunch readers for only $200 per month.

Facebook Twitter Youtube Instagram Flipboard

View this email online in your browser

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Unsubscribe

© 2021 Verizon Media. All rights reserved. 110 5th St, San Francisco, CA 94103


Posts les plus consultés de ce blog

Chris Ramsey can take the heat, but what would relegation for QPR mean for black managers in the Premier League?

The Complete App Toolkit For Your Next Budget Travel Adventure

How a team of innovators overcame the odds to create water from thin air